Friday, December 14, 2007

Pulmonary Valvioplasty - (I think that's what he called it)





Just got back from the cardiologist.

I knew Henry's heart was worse when the ultrasound only lasted five minutes (it was over an hour the first time). I really knew that we wouldn't be getting the "it's miraculously healed!" news when we were told we could get him dressed right afterwards (which meant we were skipping the EKG altogether).

His heart valve narrowness has been categorized severe. The first time we went in July it was mild. The second time (September) it was moderate.

We have an appointment on February 6th. At that appointment, we will "begin preparations" (whatever that means) for the surgery and get it scheduled. I asked how long that would be and he said that it depends on UCLA's bed availability and everyone's schedule. It could be 2 weeks or a month. SO, that means we're looking at late February to mid March for the surgery.

He explained that the surgery is usually in the morning and the baby is sent home the next morning...sometimes that night depending on how things are going. There will be no stitches since the catheter is inserted in an artery in the groin much like an IV needle. Henry will be put under anaesthesia so that he doesn't wriggle around. Adults are usually just put on mild sedatives and can actually watch the procedure on the screen!

I asked if it's a one time deal and he said that typically it is...however, if the baby's arteries are too small for the size cathedar, they have to do it in stages and work up to larger and larger catehedars, which could result in three separate procedures. I'm hoping that at 8-9 months old, Henry's arteries will be big enough to only have to do this once. He said that as in any surgery, there is the risk of complications and even death...although in his 20 years, no one's ever died. Other than the "standard" risks, it's a pretty simple procedure.

He weighed in at 14 pounds and is 25 inches long. According to a growth calculator I found online he is below 5th percentile on both counts. It worries me because that could mean that he's just a small kid, or that his heart is working overtime and stunting his growth. I wonder if he'd grow more after the surgery? Gotta look that up...

I'm not much in the mood for reflective self-evaluation posting at the moment. I'm fine. I'll post how I'm feeling either later today or over the weekend. For now, I thought I'd at least post the facts.

8 comments:

Rachel Slagle said...

Oh, Jeannett, I am so sorry to hear this news. It's so hard being a mommy when there is nothing you can do to help the situation. Just know that the three of you are in my prayers.

K said...

oh man, you must feel so helpless. Big Hugs and prayers being sent your way :)

Chamnap said...

Poor kid. He looks so cute in his diapers too. I hope you guys get the surgery scheduled sooner than later, just so you can have some "piece of mind." Take care guys!!

Brianna Heldt said...

Okay why didn't my comment post?!

Henry is just adorable. I'm so sorry you guys are going through this. You and Andy are wonderful parents, and Henry is so blessed to be your son!

Rachel said...

I don't even know you and I feel all teary. My 72 hours in CHOC with Aubrey were among the worst in my life, I couldn't imagine that feeling being ongoing. Your family is in my prayers!

Joy said...

we'll be praying for all three of you. praise God for great medical care and that henry has been correctly diagnosed and can receive the care he needs. i can't imagine what you're feeling, but you and i both know that God is watching and taking care of henry. he's such a sweetie and he's blessed to have you guys as parents.

Lisa Leonard said...

Thanks for the update--I've been checking in and we're praying for you guys. This sucks. Objectively it sounds pretty simple, but as a mom its terrifying. Regardless, God is good and ultimately in control. We have hope.

Sheridan said...

I had a pulmonary valvioplasty when I was 11, and it changed my life. My recently doctor told me that mine was the tightest valve he operated on in his career. I am 24 now and am thinking about running a marathon. I hope all went well!

Sheridan