Friday, January 7, 2011

1/6 Cardiology Appointment

Good morning!
   Not just in the greeting but in the fact that it is indeed a great morning.  Yesterday Olivia had her first cardiology appointment in 3 months.  We waited FORever, but that turned out to be all right because as we waited to be checked in and seen by the staff we brought in all our donations for the Heart Clinic and PSHU while we were waiting to kill time.  There was a baby and toddler both waiting for their appointments when we walked in and the little toddler was having an utter meltdown because he skipped his afternoon nap and the staff was running late.  I can totally sympathize with his mother as she was trying to calm him down enough for the nurse to get a good BP and then echo images.  I was able to reach into the two wagons of stuff that we brought for the clinic and offer him a few new Dr. Seuss books for his mom to read while they waited some more, and you know what?  He stopped crying, thanked me for the books and went in for his appointment.  I felt so good that all the books and toys that we collected are going to go to comfort these babies and kids when they're scared or tired of waiting - which we all know happens A LOT.

   When we took our wagon full of Boppys and Boppy covers up to the PSHU along with blankets, hats, headbands, socks, and stuffed animals Dr. Ilbawi and Dr. VanBergen happened to come up to do a check on their patients.  It was so nice to see them, but apparently it had been a tough week for the staff because they were really really happy to see Olivia with her rosy chubby cheeks.  In fact, so much so that Dr. Ilbawi sort of took her out of our arms to just love on her a bit.  Unfortunately, Olivia didn't sense as much of a connection to him as he did to her.  Then, the nurse manager showed them all the items that we were able to donate with our friends and family's help and Dr. Ilbawi turned to thank us.  I've had a few surreal moments during this whole heart journey thus far, but definitely Dr. Ilbawi thanking us for something like donating those items to the PSHU is pretty high up there.  I mean, he had his hands on our daughter's heart and is one of the only reasons that she is here with us today and he's thanking us? I am still trying to wrap my head around that, but am so pleased that the donations will go to good use in the Heart Clinic and PSHU. 

 As for Olivia, we finally started seeing staff about 1 1/2 hours after our original appointment time - hence why I'm a crazy woman always trying to book the first appointment of the day!  Sats were 86-88,  not too shabby, BP was good, systolic was a little high but not of concern and probably because she was trying to squirm away from the cuff; lung sounds were nice and clear and of course her overall color is PINK!  Finally we had the dreaded echo, there was talk of us putting it off until the next visit since she looked so good but Dr. Husayni said we needed to get one done since it had been 3 months.  Olivia started off all right and played with some rings and then the ultrasound cord, but as the tech needed to get towards her aortic arch she lost her marbles.  We had to stop the echo and she passed out, poor little thing, then the tech finished up and Dr. Husayni reviewed all the images.  Verdict: Tricuspid valve looks great with leakage within normal ranges, there is a little bit of thickening but all within normal ranges post-Glenn, and the left Pulmonary Artery (PA) that measured smaller pre-Glenn cath is still measuring smaller but doesn't require any intervention at this time and possibly not at all pre-Fontan.

As for that Fontan?  They're sticking to their guns, 2 years of age for Olivia.  Assuming that the Left PA doesn't start narrowing and affecting her sats or anything, she will go in for a cath a few months prior to the Fontan to get pressure gradients and lay out the surgical game plan.  Right now that means we virtually have about 15 months without any invasive medical intervention ahead of us for Miss Olivia to continue flourishing.  Absolutely amazing...


  1. WOW that is great news!!! Hooray for Olivia. She is just too precious.