Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Open Heart Surgery Day 1: Pre-op

Hopefully these posts won't get too lengthy! :0)

Today was Scarlette's pre-op, which entailed two things: making sure she's in perfect health for the surgery, and informing us about the surgery, what to expect afterwards, and notify of us of any risks. The first stop was vitals. The nurse performed and EKG, pulse-ox, temp, weight and length. Scarlette is 30" and 17 lbs 1 oz! All her tests looked great so they brought the NP in to tell us a little bit about the surgery. After this, we visited/met Dr. Jonas, our surgeon, and he went over the procedure in detail. Our next visit was for bloodwork, which went okay, considering they had to stick her 3 times to get the necessary amount of blood for all the tests :0/. She's a tough stick and did NOT like this part of the day at all! After this, we visited x-ray and she received chest x-rays. Our last stop was back at cardio just to make sure all tests came back in the clear and to let us know when to stop feeding her for the night! Here's how tomorrow should go:

We will arrive at Children's at 7 a.m. tomorrow. They will take her back, perform some more vitals, ask us a series of questions and then around 8:30 a.m. they will take her back to the O.R. The anaesthesia will take approximately an hour to administer, and this is when she will get all of her IV's and art lines. The surgery itself will take approximately 3-4 hours. They will hook her up to the lung-bypass machine, lower her body temperature (the body requires less oxygen when at a lower temp) and then perform the surgery. It is an open surgery so they will cut down her chest and through her sternum to access her heart. They will cut out the extra membrane, close the hole in her atrial wall (with a piece of pericardium, fatty tissue that surrounds the heart) and then close her back up. They will secure the sternum with three small coils, and use dissolvable stitches under the first layer of skin so that there is no puckering or pinching on either side of her scar. Hopefully it will be a nice, thin clean scar that will fade over time!

When we see her again (approx 2 p.m. if all goes exactly according to plan) she will be in the Cardiac ICU and will have all of her iv's, her breathing tube, and her two chest tubes still in place. She will probably look A LOT like she did when she was first born, with TONS of tubes and wires and cords everywhere. The NP said to expect lots of swelling and puffiness.

She may not be extubated (the breathing tube taken out) until Friday morning, but we are hoping for Thursday night. They are going to keep her comfortably sedated until she has been extubated, so she won't be awake for much of Thursday, if at all. Chest tubes are usually kept in for 24 hours, depending on how much fluid drainage there is, so please pray that those can come out ASAP because they are painful and she cannot be moved or held while they are in place. All of her IV's will stay in place until discharge.

The surgeon said we should most likely expect 3-4 days in the ICU, 3-4 days on the Heart and Kidney Unit but that it was entirely dependent on how Scarlette does during surgery and tomorrow night. So please pray for healing so that we might get out of the hospital a little bit early! We also ask for prayers for the surgeon and the anaesthesiologist, that they get lots of rest tonight, and are on their A-game for tomorrow! I will have someone updating my facebook periodically tomorrow, and will update the blog when I get home tomorrow evening.

We are SO appreciative of everything that everyone has done for us, words cannot express our gratitude. The prayers are welcomed, keep them coming! Thanks to all of you who have supported us through prayer, love, communication and meals. Scarlette is the BEST thing that has happened to us and it warms our hearts that she is loved by so many incredible people!

Love, the Skrove's

1 comment:

  1. Lots of love and support coming from Southern California <3