surgery day redux

Thanks to all of you who had your toes crossed all day–I know how hard that can make getting around–but it worked (sort of).


Sophie’s 5AM chest x-ray looked good, but her labs showed low hemoglobin (from all of her lab draws), so they knew they would need to give her blood during surgery.  They took her away around 8:00, and we headed to the waiting room.  Our wait there was a little more tolerable than the last time since it wasn’t as crowded and we got there early enough to grab some good seats (a.k.a. an ez boy.)  It’s weird to feel like you kind of know the drill–not something you want to get used to.  


Within 45 minutes, the otolaryngologist came out to tell us that during the bronchoscopy they discovered that Sophia has a narrowing in her right upper lobe bronchus and the left mainstem bronchus is somewhat compressed by her descending aorta.  They will be watching to see how she does (and we have to be really careful she doesn’t get sick) and hopefully address these issues when she has her next heart surgery.  They’ll need to balloon the right side (more than once) and tack the aorta back a little.  


They called around 10:00 to say they were just getting started with the G-tube/Nissen procedure.  It seems like they spent some time putting a line into her artery and adding another IV–when she finally emerged from surgery she had a few spots where it looked like they attempted to find places to put the lines in.  At about 12:30 Dr. Foker came to tell us that things went well and she’d be up in the ICU shortly.  I was very relieved, but also realized I’m sort of tired of having these procedures–knowing that we will be back here before too long for a riskier procedure.  


We got to see her much more quickly than last time and be in the room when the nurse was transferring her OR lines, etc. to what she’ll need in the PICU.  Her temporary G-tube is in, and it is held in place by a baby bottle nipple.  I guess she won’t get any tummy time for awhile (but we do have to watch for random babies trying to drink from her belly.)  


They apparently gave her a lot of muscle relaxants thinking the surgeon wanted her sedated for awhile (which we’d heard too).  But, it turns out, he wanted her to wake up.  She was sort of paralyzed at first.  Her heart rate would increase when we talked to her or touched her, which we thought meant she was mad at us.  Her nurse, though, thoughtfully suggested that she was just frustrated that she couldn’t move when she heard stimuli.  Sophia started wiggling within an hour or so.  Her arterial line (into the artery) went bad from Sophia squirming around so much, so they had to pull that almost right away.  She was extubated really quickly, which was a real relief as she was not happy with it at all.  She got really uncomfortable and got some pain medicine, but that didn’t really seem to do the trick.  Her blood pressure dropped instantly with the first dose, but after that she was pretty uncomfortable.  We were able to hold her as soon as she was extubated.


The nutritionist and discharge nurse both came to talk to us about possibly going home over the weekend (I guess the docs let them know this so they can be prepared).  We can’t believe it is even possible and don’t have our hopes up, but we’ll see and will keep you posted.  We are very glad to be on the road home!