Poppy is back in the OR this morning. Yesterday, when they trialled her off of ECMO, she seemed to do really well- she was off for almost a couple of hours. They look at her blood work and numbers while she is trialled off to determine if she’s really ready to come off, as it’s a surgical procedure to come all the way off. All of her numbers looked really good for the most part, with the exception of her lactate. Lactate level tells them how well her heart is getting blood to the body, and how hard it’s working to do so. A normal level is less than 1. They would be happy with less than 2 for Poppy. Within 30 minutes of being off her lactate was 3.4, and after an hour she was at 5. During the trial, they do an echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart) to check function. They noticed even more severe regurgitation of her tricuspid valve. With this kind of regurgitation, her heart would not sustain her off of ECMO (life support). Looking back at her fetal echocardiograms from the pregnancy, there was never this issue. The doctors had never expected this to be an issue for Poppy.
All of this prompted them to go to the Cath Lab to get another look. The Cath lab is when they shoot dye into the area to get a better picture of what’s going on. They do this by running a catheter through a vein in her leg. Sometimes they are able to fix certain things right in the lab by using a balloon to widen a narrowed area, however the Cath doctor felt it was much to risky to attempt for Poppy because of where her narrowing is.
The blessing in all of this is that they found a cause for the problem- narrowing of her aortic arch, which was worked on in her first surgery. Her first surgery took twice as long as expected because of bleeding. The surgeons sometimes use a few extra stitches to get bleeds under control, so their suspicion is that all of this trouble could be because of a stitch that is slightly too tight. This means that as I type this, Poppy is undergoing the same type of surgery she had before- bypass and everything. Only now, she’s going in on ECMO, which she has to have blood thinners to be on, known bleeds on her brain, and with her OR history of bleeding. Because of this, the doctors have no time frame for this surgery. If all goes well, and her heart can handle it after the repair, there is a chance she could come out of surgery off of ECMO, and about the same chance she could come out of surgery still on it.
My heart breaks for my sweet innocent baby girl. She’s 19 days old, back in the OR for her second open heart surgery. We got to cuddle with her for 9 of those days-thank you Jesus- we soaked her in, all while tethered to IV pumps. Now, since her first surgery (Norwood), she’s getting a bald spot on the top of her head from me stroking it all day, while I talk to her, longing for the day when I get to hold her again. She’s spent her whole life so far in the hospital in heart failure. I’m so ashamed of how I took Crosby’s good health for granted. Sweet Poppy was born in heart failure 😦 I just hurt for my darling girl 😦 She’s already been through so much…
But in all of this there is hope. There is hope because they found the cause of the issue. There is hope because this is another chance. God continues to show us He is here, right with us, cradling our sweet baby girl in His loving arms. He has her. He has all of this. He can control her bleeding. He can guide the surgeons hands. He has this.
Please pray that:
-Bleeding wouldn’t be an issue
-Surgery fixes the problem
-She comes out of surgery off of ECMO
-Her brain be protected from anymore bleeding/strokes
-Peace and rest for our heavy hearts