Monday, April 2, 2012

Stella's Heart Surgery

Last Tuesday Stella had her long awaited heart repair.

Stella has PDA, which is basically a hole in the heart. In most babies it closes while they are still in the womb or within a few weeks of birth. Stella's was discovered still open at 10 months old when we heard a loud heart murmur. She was monitored for a year to allow her to gain weight but when we recently found that the left side of her heart was starting to enlarge we knew it was time to repair it.

Essentially they put in a metal coil mesh type plug into the hole which allows the blood and tissue surrounding it to clot and form around the device and close the hole. It's called an Amplatzer Duct Occluder.

So last Tuesday we woke up early and headed to Childrens Hospital. Everyone was super friendly from check-in to our nurses, the Child Life Specialist and especially our Pediatric Cardiology team including our doctor and the anesthesiologist. Stella was SUPER tired by the time we got close to surgery so I got to hold her while they gave her strawberry scented gas and she passed smooth out. After she was under they prepped her, did her iv and another echo to measure the size and shape of the PDA. Then they made three tiny incisions in her upper groin/hip area and used a catheter to do the repair. She was in surgery for about 2 hours and then went into recovery.

She had a rough time in recovery but once we got her some anti-nausea medicine and juice she calmed down and rested. Within a few hours she was shoveling in a plate of chicken nuggets, mac and cheese, applesauce and pudding and we were released so she could sleep in her own bed that night.

By the next afternoon she was RUNNING around and acting totally fine. We changed out her large bandage for one tiny Dora bandaid and she was good to go. Praise Jesus for modern medicine and the wonderful team at Childrens! Stella's heart is now fixed and should stay that way for good!

No comments: