Day 22

Esther is 3 weeks and 1 day old now.

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Thank you everyone for your notes and prayers for us. I know some have asked for our mailing address in Grand Rapids to cards. Our address is: Hannon, PO box 2703, Grand Rapids, MI 49501

Today was a busy day trying to prep Esther for surgery. They tried to wean her off the ECMO circuit. On ECMO they can control everything about the circulation of her blood. From the flow to the temperature of the blood. How they wean her is by going down on the blood flow, which makes her heart start working. Once they have the flow low enough they clamp the circuit off and see how she does. They watch her numbers (blood pressure, O2 among other things) and see if she can handle being disconnected. She was able to get pretty low flow but not all the way. So she is still on ECMO.

Also yesterday they added a new chest tube. They did an ultrasound of her right lung and saw a substantial amount of fluid there. Even though they do X-rays often, you can’t see fluid on an X-ray. Once they placed the chest tube they pulled out 120ml of old blood. They did a chest X-ray and saw an improvement of her right lung. Which is great! Because she is on the blood thinners the chest tube kept draining blood. This might have contributed to her not being able to wean off of ECMO. Because of the blood loss they did not want to operate on her until it stopped. The doctors decided to stop her heparin and start a medication that helped with clotting. That has stopped the draining and she seems to be doing great.

She is scheduled for surgery at 9 am, Thursday morning. The surgery is to bring down her internal organs and patch the hole in her diaphragm. This doesn’t fix the problem with her lungs. We chose to do this surgery now so that she has the support of ECMO to recover. It is very risky to preform surgery while on ECMO. She is on blood thinners which could cause massive bleeding. After surgery, Esther will probably get worse before she gets better. Please continue to pray for Esther. We know God has been here with us and helped Esther in so many ways. Pray that He continues to heal her.

I will be updating throughout the day on Esther’s facebook page. www.facebook.com/esthermaehannon

i do try to explain what is going on, but if you have any questions you can email or message on facebook. Hannon.lauren@gmail.com

 

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2 weeks old

We are praising God for the small strides in the right direction that Esther is taking.

Thank you all who are praying with us, and those who fasted with us too. What a blessing to be lifted up in prayer, all over the world, by so many!

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Yesterday they started Esther on the oscillator at a low setting, just to get things started. They have been taking an X-ray every 6 hours or so to see what is happening. They change the settings each time. Now they are holding steady and continuing to X-ray her to make sure things are ok. Today, after some suctioning we started to see her chest vibrate. Which means that the oscillator is getting air into the lungs. Also instead of just heart sounds in the chest you can hear air.

They are keeping it gentle trying to get the bronchioles to open up, then they will try to have the lungs fill with air. She still has a long way to go, but we are so thankful to have things go in the right direction.

A few days ago, she had an air pocket by her heart, when they removed the air it filled with blood. They spent a few days debating what to do about it. Esther’s surgeon fixed the cannula’s where the ECMO machine is attached to her. That helped her blood flow quiet a bit but it wasn’t enough. Today they decided to open her up to get the blood out. The cardiac surgeon was very confident that it would be alright. Apparently, right when they cut into her chest blood poured out and her stats instantly were better. The blood was old, meaning that it wasn’t continuing to leak. They put a chest tube in, but there has ¬†been very minimal drainage. Since then her blood pressure and heart rate are better. The numbers for the ECMO are better. Her arms and legs are warmer. She is even peeing. Yay.

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Everytime I walk the halls through the PICU to her room someone is talking about it and how awesome Esther is looking. We are so happy to see small steps in the right direction. Praying so hard that we continue this way. There are still so many things that can go wrong. And she still has to prove herself before they will do surgery to repair the diaphragm.

Esther has been on ECMO for almost 2 weeks now. This is when ECMO circuits start to fail. Which means blood clots, brain bleeds and a few other things that can go wrong. They can get a new ECMO machine but that is risky too since she will be off ECMO while they replace it. We are praying this machine stays good and when the time comes to replace it, that it goes smoothly.

Esther has been on a paralytic for a few days now. It makes me sad not to see her legs move or eyes open. I know once things get better we won’t need it anymore. She is still as adorable as ever.

All of Esther’s stuff.

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The other kids have been doing so well with everything going on. And all the nurses love seeing them when they visit Esther. We have been finding lots of fun things to do around here.

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