Wednesday, April 18, 2012

JESSICA update!

Aren't you all glad that I called this the Schnaderbeck blog and not the Alexis blog?  :)
Well, I named it the Schnaderbeck blog because originally we had a Care Page for Alexis - but I wanted the blog to include the whole family.  Little did I know 4 1/2 years ago that we'd be sharing Jessica's medical journey on here.

5:30am - Jessica woke up.  No extra need to wake up early.  She could drink until 7:30am.  We played with new toys until 9:30 and then left for the hospital.
Good luck on our part that Children's Hospital Boston was doing painting and coloring next to the Pre-Op waiting room - Jessica got her own Costco badge.  We'll sign her up to visit there on the weekends as a greeter.  See how happy she is. This was after running around on the stage "dancing".  We're doing some sticker fun while we did all of the waiting in the pre-op holding area.  Then the bottom left photo is Jessica being serious - awaiting the ride to the OR.  Since she has a "paradoxical" reaction to versed (what we learned last cath), we didn't give versed - only Ketamine.  Well, it's supposed to start to sedate you, it just made Jessica talk even more.  All of the doctors were amazed when we said that she had already had some, because clearly it wasn't taking effect.  :-)

So, she wheeled into the OR at 12:45.
1:50 they called to say that they were making the incision in her chest (they had to do a bunch of prep - airway, IVs, etc)
2:30 on Heart-Lung machine
4:00 back off Heart-Lung machine.  I know that the Heart families out there know the anxiety that you feel between 2:30-4pm.  And then the relief that you feel and the tears that you shed when they come back and say "heart beating, looks great".
4:15 The surgeon came and told us about the surgery.  He did manage to do a partial sternotomy- which means he only  made a small cut into her sternum - this should me a faster recovery and less pain maintenance.  We're thrilled for this.  It also means that she'll have a smaller incision and at some point when she's 25 - she can wear a lower v-neck shirt (not while she lives in our house - as people know about me and my turtle-neck wearing program).  We were thrilled, especially when the doctor told us that there were so many holes in the ASD that essentially there wasn't much separation between her atria.  Thankfully for us, she has compensated well - but we are thrilled we made the decision to fix it now before other complications set in (her heart was working too hard).
5:45pm When she was settled in the room, we got to come in.  Here are photos.

She's medicated but not incredibly sedated.  The nurse woke her up when she set the brake on the bed.  Jessica was her normal self waking up a little shocked and concerned about tubes everywhere.  
She has woken up for some more conversation and concern about where Daddy is (sorry Matt, she just did this).  Matt is at home with Alexis, but he knows his Baby Jessica is in good hands (with the Doctors and Nurses - and grumpy momma bear if needed).  

We will be in the ICU until most of the tubes are removed, then out in the Heart ward of the hospital.  Jessica is a trooper, looks great - we couldn't be happier!  And relieved!

Thank you for all of the good thoughts, the prayers, the good wishes - we have appreciated it!
Catherine, Matt, Alexis and most especially super-trooper JESSICA


Melanie said...

Great update on Jessica, Catherine! It's obvious you are an amazing mom doing a wonderful job with your beautiful girls. I hope Jessica has a smooth recovery.

Catherine said...

Fantastic and so delighted for the partial sternum. Just incredible what they can achieve in such a small space. God bless and looks like we could be sharing our homecomings soon....