Monday, October 31, 2011

Another day, another twist

Remember how I said I hate rollercoasters? Well this ride is a long way from finished yet.

It was wonderful to have Petrina home for the weekend, and to be able to have everyone come to our place to celebrate my Mum's birthday. Way better to be sitting out in the yard than in a hospital room.

This afternoon we had another scan. Leading in to it we were a little nervous, but generally thinking that even if there wasn't any progress yet the doctors would still let Petrina come home for a few more days until the drugs had had every chance to take effect.

Well, the scan didn't show any improvement, except that the amniotic fluid level was a little high but is now OK. In terms of heart beat and oedema, no change.

I didn't realise at the time, but I guess it's a measure of how serious the problem is that the paediatric cardiologist went and had a conference call with two colleagues and with an adult cardiologist to agree on the best way forward. There are lots of options, each with their own pros and cons to weigh up. At the moment the plan is simply to increase the level of the current drugs. If that hasn't worked within a couple of days, they'll start changing the drug combination to something a little more potent - dropping the "lolly water" component in favour of one that's still relatively benign. If they still don't work there is another drug in a higher class of toxicity, although they don't want to go there if they don't have to. Even "relatively benign" is still strong stuff that needs to be monitored carefully. Balancing treating the baby and keeping Petrina healthy is a difficult task.

It's still a grim situation, but the cardiologist is still confident that they can treat it successfully.

So the long and the short of it is that Petrina's back in hospital again, probably for a longer stay this time.

Please pray:
  • That we will keep trusting God
  • That Petrina will cope well with the increased doses and will be able to handle the stress it puts on her body
  • That the drugs will start to take effect on the baby
  • That the doctors will have great wisdom in the decisions they make
  • That I will know how to balance work committments and caring for SP
  • Give thanks that the ward staff have been so good in caring for Petrina thus far
PS the title for the post came from an observation we made while Petrina was getting settled in the room, that when you're in "the valley of the shadow of death", the path twists and turns around each mountain, making it hard to see where the end is. Give thanks for our Good Shepherd.

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