The pediatric surgeons rounded this morning and their plan is to take Clay down to the O.R. tomorrow morning, given that everything stays stable today & tonight.
...They plan to start out doing the g-tube, then if it seems like he's tolerating that procedure well, they will put in a broviak (a more permanent IV line).
...If he does well with those procedures, they will try to go ahead and do his diaphragm repair surgery.
..This will consist of opening his chest and suturing a patch over the hole in his diaphragm. They will try to suture the patch onto good strong muscle tissue, so that a future reherniation isn't as likely to happen. During his first repair surgery, there was hardly any tissue to sew to...thus, this reherniation. So please pray more tissue has grown during the past 6 months and that Dr. Draus can get a good patch on his diaphragm.
...They will have to decompress his left lung in order to have room to work. So he will be relying solely on his right lung to oxygenate his blood. He has done this before, so we know he can, but please pray he can handle it tomorrow!
...If at any point Clay drops his oxygen saturation levels and can't recover, they will forfeit their efforts and we will try again at a later date. The pediatric surgeons will only do what Clay can handle. Please pray that Clay will very clearly let them know what he can tolerate.
...If they get to do everything they hope to do, it will be a 4-5 hour surgery. Pray for our family's strength & nerves during the wait!
I can't imagine being a pediatric surgeon and making these decisions, that are ultimately life-threatening. They do not want to wait too long to do the repair, for fear that he will get sicker. It's a window of opportunity that one of the surgeons said only Clay & God knows when the right time is...
I do feel like Clay is very stable now, despite the alleged pneumonia that came up last week. The tracheal cultures are growing some bacteria, which the antibiotics are working to rid. But Clay hasn't really been acting 'sick'. No fever, he's not requiring much more oxygen (set on 45%), he's tolerated being OFF the paralytic since Friday, he even had a sedation holiday--where the sedation meds were turned off for a couple of hours yesterday. AND I got to hold him yesterday!!!! For the first time in over 3 weeks. Felt so good! And Eric got to hold him this morning.. And he tolerated a little bath today very well. Smells 100x better too! ha!
So, I'm feeling good about the decision to try the repair tomorrow. I'm hoping and praying that Clay can tolerate it all, that we can get it all over & done with. Recovery is not gonna be pretty. I know our nurses are dreading it...our sweet, wonderful nurses! Again, they are making sure he is covered every day, even picking up extra if he's not. I honestly don't know what we'd do without them. Yay, Team Clay!!
I can't ask it enough: PRAY! It is all we can do from the sidelines, but I know it is more than enough to get us through.
My Clay-man is a tough cookie, he's gonna be just fine. See, he's showing off his muscles:
|Go, Clay, GO!!|