Friday, June 06, 2008

Heart Cath Lab

I am so glad that this day is almost over. It was exhausting. I have to say that I would not have survived intact if it had not been for my dear cousin Valerie. She came with me to hold my hand, and was an enormous support for me. Elaina was taken to the Cath Lab at 1:50 this afternoon. They told me that I could wait in her room and that they would be able to call me with updates, but to expect the procedure to last about 3 hours. I got a call from one of the lab nurses at 3:50. She said that Elaina was stable, but that they were having a very difficult time getting the catheter in. They thought that she must have some clots from the last catheter proceedure and had compensated by growing some "collateral arteries". The nurse said to expect the procedure to last longer than anticipated, but she did not know how long it would take. Needless to say, this made my anticipation MUCH worse than it had been already. I got another call shortly after 6:00 to let me know that they were finished. Elaina was on her way to recovery and then would be headed back to her room.

So, here's what they found:
There is very limited blood return in her right ventricle. They expected this. The blood return in her left ventricle looks good. It does look like she has outgrown her BT Shunt. It is still working at the moment, but she is at a much higher risk for clotting or failure. They put a balloon catheter in to see if they could enlarge the opening between her chambers, but were not as successful as they had hoped. The blood flow was increased from the echo on Thursday, but the hole is still smaller than they would like it to be. At this point, surgery is going to be next week. The cardiologists are meeting with her surgeon to discuss the best plan of action. From what I understand, there are 2 different repairs that they could do. I don't fully understand both of them at the moment, so I will wait to post it until I do and that way I can be sure I'm getting all the details right. Hopefully I will know by tomorrow.

Elaina got back from recovery at about 7:30. Her right leg was extremely dusky, but did have a pulse in the ankle. Her blood return was slow, but it was there. I took some pictures, but I'll have to wait until I get home to post them. She lost a bit of blood during the catheterization, so she is getting a small transfusion. They left the IJ in her neck and said that they would move it when she goes for surgery. She's still pretty knocked out from the sedations and anesthesia, but has cried for her pacifier a couple of times. Oh, my sweet, sweet baby......

I am holding up, but I know that it is due to the prayers of others. There is no way to Thank You all enough. I will post tomorrow when I hear back from the cardiologists and surgeon.


Valerie said...

I love you! I'm so glad I could be there today. Everything's going to be fine--our girl's a fighter through and through!

Vaeh's Blog said...

Oh how many times I have been in your shoes... Vaeh's first angioplasty (4th cath total) lasted 6 hours! She had clotted off in the left groin so they couldn't go through that route, & her right side had "re-routed" itself. We saw how it looked on the cath images & it looked like a water slide, coming out down around & back up to reconnect with the original vessel! Let's just say her cardiologist was pale (& he's originally from Israel!)! The second angio went so much better. And with her 3rd open heart a few weeks ago, they were actually able to thread her arterial line in the left groin! So there is some hope that her vessels will get a little bigger as she does!

As for the swollen/ dusky leg... Vaeh's always does that after a cath. Her vessels "spasm" after the procedure with all of the trauma. So as long as there is a pulse & flow to the leg, I wouldn't get too worried!

Boy, I'm getting wordy! Know that if they are planning the surgery for next week, it is her time. They are trained in just this sort of thing & know what they're doing! Know even further that GOD has her in his all encompasing hands! No better place to be! We'll be praying & checking in on you to see how things are going!

Tina & Vaeh:0)
(Jon & Gabby, too!)

Kathy said...

oh...that sweet little angel!
If she loves that you want me to make you one of my pacifier holders and send it to you??
email me the kind of pacifier that she likes and your address or the hospitals!

Take care of that baby doll!!!

Vanessa said...

It's great to have a support system when your going through so much. You know I'm always praying for you guys. I hope your weekend has been uneventful.


Jake & Stephanie Ellinger said...

I'm so glad to have met you at the picnic on Saturday night! I hope that the cardiologists figure out what to do with her. Our family is including her in our prayers, especially with such a big event coming up! Good luck... Nathan is in room 3087. I will be by in the next day or so to visit you.

-Stephanie Ellinger (Nathan's Mom)