An account of the Swope family's travels through life and Earle's observations following a series of unforeseen events. Earle (Dad) experienced a near death experience and subsequent PTSD in 2008. In 2013 their 3rd child Gabriel was born with HLHS (Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome) which means no left ventricle and 3 open heart surgeries. In spite of or because of, we realize how blessed and rich are our lives and how wonderful this human experience.
Wednesday, August 24, 2016
1 liter per minute
Last night about 4am they removed Gabriel's breathing tube, extubation of the endotracheal tube (ET) in medical parlance.
Intubated in the CVICU.
Nice words to read on the screen after they pulled his tube. Cathy was his nurse throughout the night and did a great job managing his pain and discomfort and filling the orders for FFP (fresh frozen plasma) and platlets to help Gabriel clot. The Fontan causes significant trauma and therefore drainage into the chest cavity due to the scar tissue from the previous two surgeries. The CVICU team was able to get the drainage to an acceptable output so they could pull the tube. The fear had been that there was excessive oozing inside the chest and they did not want to pull the tube if they thought they had to go back inside. Thank you to our support network, your prayers and positive thoughts have buoyed us and helped Gabriel clot. His chest tubes are still draining but at a completely acceptable quantity.
Extubated and breathing 1 liter per minute of oxygen.
Mommy and Gabriel in the morning.
We had a special treat getting to see Isaac last night, one of his Norwood Nurses who remembered Gabriel as "The first kid that ever pulled a line out on me, he pulled out his RA lines with his foot," and commented on how big he was (Isaac also mentioned the line was pulled while he was on break). We also saw Manju who was such a wonderful advocate and caregiver to Gabriel after his Glenn procedure, it was a treat to talk to her as she covered Cathy's break time. These are such special people. This morning Melanie took over and has so far removed the central line from his jugular vein, the foley catheter (for pee), the rectal thermometer, and has decreased his meds to morphine as needed and tylenol. Melanie commented on how well Gabriel did with the removal of his central line and said it was probably the easiest she has ever seen it removed. There is talk of us moving to Three West (the cardiac convalescent ward) tomorrow!