Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Broken Hearted

First thing Monday morning, I called the pediatrician's office to get Sweet Pea in for an appointment.  Earliest I could get her in was Tuesday morning, so I had another day to sit and worry about everything that could possibly be wrong.

But at least her color was looking good...

Early Tuesday morning we headed off to the pediatrician's office.  One of the things I really dislike about going to the dr's office (besides the insane amounts of time they make you wait) is that I feel like I have to defend our choices.  And, I was right.  Almost immediately I felt like I had to go on the defensive about our choice to home birth and to decline prenatal testing- not prenatal care, prenatal testing, because it wouldn't have changed our decision to have Sweet Pea.

Once we got through that, I finally felt like we were getting some answers.  First the dr wanted us to head over to the lab to get some blood work done.  And then she was able to get us an appointment to see a pediatric cardiologist that same day.
When we were finished at the lab, we headed into downtown Dallas to see the cardiologist.  The first test they ran was an EKG.  It was sad to see Sweet Pea hooked up to all the wires =(  Then the dr came in a said they needed to run an echo cardiogram- basically, an ultrasound of the heart.  Over to another room where the technician swaddled Sweet Pea so she couldn't move.  Forty minutes later we were back in the first room waiting for the results.  I had been praying the whole time we were waiting that her heart would be fine, but it wasn't so.

Sweet Pea has been diagnosed with what's called Complete Artioventricular Canal Defect.  What that basically means is that there is a hole between the right and left side of her heart that caused the valves that separate the upper and lower chambers to form one complete valve instead of two valves.

Now I know there are other children out there that had holes in their hearts that fixed themselves, but that most likely won't happen for Sweet Pea.  Because the valve didn't form properly, the drs are going to have to surgically separate the valve.  The dr told us that it's a fairly simple/ routine surgery and the likelihood of her needing further surgery is pretty small. 

The good news out of all this bad news is that because of the location of the larger hole (above the valve instead of below) we can put off surgery for a little while.  This will give Sweet Pea a chance to put on some weight and get a bit stronger.  Praise the Lord for the little things =)

For now all we can do is wait.  We'll be seeing the pediatrician weekly to monitor her weight gain and the cardiologist every couple weeks to monitor her heart.  Part of me wants the surgery sooner rather than later just so I don't have to continue worrying about it, but then the other part knows that it would be better for her to be a bit bigger and stronger.

She certainly loves her baby sister...

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