Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Thoughts on Our Journey: The Medical Exam

All children adopted in China are subject to a medical exam for US immigration purposes prior to leaving for home.  All children over two years of age are additionally required to have a TB test.  If the initial skin test is positive an x-ray is required and if they prove to have TB it becomes very complicated.  Our girls were twenty seven months old at match.  Our agency offered to request that the girls be tested prior to our travel for peace of mind.  We opted to do so.

When we got to Guangzhou we knew we would be going for the medical exam and we were concerned.  You see while we were in Nanchang our agency had provided a Chinese doctor to examine our children.  When we had gone up to the hotel room for the check up my husband had been holding Rose.  She was outraged by the exam!  I have never seen a child hold a grudge - from the time of the exam she had totally refused to allow him to hold her.  So now we were heading into another exam - what would we do if she decided to refuse to let me hold her as well?

The clinic was small and extremely crowded when we walked in with our travel group.  The nurses were brisk and it was chaotic - with lots of children crying.  The girls were weighed and measured, but never stood still so the measurements did not seem terribly accurate.  Most of the rest of the examination was a blur of waiting, doctors talking in Chinese and then at the very end the dreaded TB test.  None of the other children in our travel group had to undergo this test - both girls cried when they were stuck with the needle and then it was over.  Thankfully Rose didn't refuse to let me carry her out of the clinic.  

Of course it wasn't over yet.  We had to return to the clinic for the test spot to be examined later that week.  I tried not to give it a lot of thought - after all we had asked that they be tested earlier and had been assured they were both in the clear.  But I kept looking at the spots on their arms and trying to remember how big they had been - both spots looked like they had grown to me and I was starting to think we might have to get x-rays.  When we returned to the clinic - while all our travel group were at the consulate - both girls were in the clear - although Roni came within a whisper of failing the test.  It was very close - they measured more than one time - I was so relieved when we were told their tests were negative.

We were now clear to leave the country all we had left was to go to the American Consulate.

Next: Thoughts on Our Journey: The US Consulate

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