Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Heart tests

Overnight Samuel's heart rate, respiration rate and blood pressure increased, and his oxygen saturation decreased - suggesting something wasn't right. During the morning consultant's round, they explained to Shirley that as Samuel's condition is very rare, they needed to rule out heart complications. They ordered an ECG and a Heart Ultrasound as well as further blood tests. The ECG was a 5-minute procedure with Samuel wired up while sitting on Shirley's knee. The ultrasound took about an hour and showed three areas of concern. The very helpful Cardiac specialist drew the diagram on the left to illustrate what he found. The main problem is the ductus valve, which is open when in the womb enabling the blood to bypass the fluid-filled lungs.
After birth, this valve should shut and the ductus becomes redundant, however the scan showed that Samuel's ductus is still open and needs to be closed off. We are meeting with the cardiac consultant tomorrow to discuss the options to treat this and a few other minor heart anomalies that were also identified. Clearly this is a dissapointing development but the heart specialist did not consider it to be a major problem to rectify and would not require open heart surgery. Samuel's breathing difficulties may be linked to extra bloodflow around the lungs due to the heart anomalies identfied by the ultrasound and so it's hoped that by treating his heart, his breathing should improve as a result.

Shirley was at the hospital all day with Samuel and gave him his first hair wash, which also provided the opportunity for a photo without all his tubes. Due to the nurse being tied up with another baby, Shirley got to hold Samuel for 2 hours, as it takes 2 people to move him with all his lines. The girls came up after school and they enjoyed seeing him and were intrigued by the ultrasound machine and seeing Samuel's heart.


The Heslop Family said...

He's just the most gorgeous baby! We've added his wee heart to the list in our prayers; we're backing you, Samuel, to overcome all this. Our God is a God of miracles - we're believing for one.

Hope to see you soon, Francis and Shirley. I'll call in the weekend to see if I can come visit next week. The boys have picked a toy for Samuel. :-)

All our love, to you all.
The Heslop Family.

The Nicholls's said...

How intrically we are made; such tiny valves we had never heard of before. We pray on for wisdom for the doctors and a miracle for baby Samuel. The blood results of a couple of days ago were good news and we pray you will have positive results tomorrow.
Samuel is a beautiful baby and you must be so proud of his fighting spirit. Keep pressing on.
With our love to you all.
Melvyn & Sally

Luke PC said...

Hi there F & S. We're checking the blog everyday and praying for Samuel and you all lots.

Yolanda said...

Praying for you and that precious little boy each and every day! How uplifting and stirring are those times when the Holy Spirit touches our hearts so deeply and helps us understand how close our Father in heaven is to us and how much He tenderly loves and cares for us. I can understand on a much smaller scale the mind-boggling medical whirlwind you are facing as I go through some issues and surgery with my mum. My heart goes out to you. Know you are loved half a world away!!!

Colleen said...

Dear Francis Shirley Jasmine, Candice and Samuel,
You all look wonderful on line and we think it is a brave and beautiful thing you are doing. Seems like yesterday in Bangkok that Shirley told me she was pregnant and now to see your dedication and commitment is awe inspiring. God bless you in your journey, we look forward to seeing you all again and being with our honorary grand nieces and nephew.
With love from Joe and Colleen

Meredith said...

Francis and Shirley,

As I read through your blogs, I am deeply moved by God's presence in those times when you grieve your helplessness to control events and outcomes and simply love Samuel, Jasmine and Candice through this time.

I think of Mary, the mother of Jesus and even God--one helpless to change what was happening to her son and the other all powerful but helplessly bound by love not to act. As you draw close to the heart of God in the mingling of love and sorrow, deep fatigue and tenderness, fearful uncertainty and sure hope for the future, may His presence be your comfort when answers are few.

Prayers rise from many of us in Seattle.


Suga said...

Hi you guys, Liz and I read the blog each day to keep up to date and pray. I think I cry each time too... really feeling your pain (although we can never truly understand how difficult this journey is for you). Wishing I could do more to support you - but know I'm not much use visiting with my own little people... I will make dinner one night next week. What suits better - Mon or Tues? Oh yeah - and Liz & I both woke early yest morning.. around 4.20am ...we believe the Lord was waking us (in different cities)to pray for Samuel... o how much HE loves your wee boy too! xxx lots of love

Francis and Shirley said...

Hi Suga - Either day would be great - I'll give you a call! The night you and Lizzie woke up, so did I and so did Anne (Mother'n'law), so that was weird/cool.... and he had had a rough night. Hope you're lovely 5 are all better and healthy now. with love, X Shirl

Francis and Shirley said...

Hi Suga - Either day would be great - I'll give you a call! The night you and Lizzie woke up, so did I and so did Anne (Mother'n'law), so that was weird/cool.... and he had had a rough night. Hope you're lovely 5 are all better and healthy now. with love, X Shirl