Thursday, January 24, 2008

Family Updates:

Hi everyone, good news this time. Carter is doing great. We've been home for 2 weeks now, he's off oxygen and looks so good. He just started smiling so big and often, it just melts our hearts. His eyes look alert all the time and he's getting so strong. He is eating good just check out those 2 chins. He has hit all of his milestones so far, he has exceeded all of our expectations! He is starting physical therapy soon to help strengthen his neck muscles to hold up that heavy head. So all is well so far. Jordan's birthday was yesterday, he's 11, I know, he's getting so big. We are almost the same height, I think he's going to be tall like his uncle Ben. Well thanks for all the wonderful calls and concerns while we stayed at the hospital this last time, we really appreciate all of the support you've shown to us.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

We are still in the hospital (see below for full story) but things are looking up. Carter had his surgery on Friday (Jan. 4th) to get his new shunt put in. This one is on the other side of his head, but it looks good. He did good during the surgery and everything was looking great for us to go home the next day. He woke up Saturday with a cold. He was coughing and his eyes looked a little sick. The Neurosurgeons came in that morning and said that we could go home. Our cute nurse said that she was going to send his stuffiness off to be tested and it came back RSV. So we unpacked and settled in for another few days. All of our hospital neighbors have RSV so it wasn't a total surprise that he got it. All they do for that is give him some breathing treatments (kind of like asthma treatments) and suction his yuckies out of his nose and give more oxygen and then just wait and see how he does. The doc's came in this morning and said we can go home tomorrow (Wednesday) if he continues to do good. He's hanging in there and being so very brave. It's going to be nice getting him home where he can finally relax.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Not So Great News

We are back in Primary Children's. Carter was doing so well the few weeks between hospital stays. He was on room air and off oxygen. He was eating well and doing great. We brought him in on Saturday Dec 22nd, just because he had a slight temperature. I called his doctor and he said to rush to the ER and asked if we needed an ambulance. I thought he was crazy, an ambulance for a temperature? We loaded up and came into Primary's ER. They did a few tests, doctors rushed in and took up to the Intensive care unit in critical condition. The tests found a shunt infection and a staff infection. On Sunday he had to get his shunt taken out and a temporary external drain put in. Its a tube that goes from his brain to a bag to collect the spinal fluid. They started an aggressive antibiotic treatment and they test this fluid each day. It has to test negative for infection of 14-21 days and then they will put his internal shunt back in. Well Sunday after they put in the external drain, we were taken to our room in very stable condition. The nurse came in and gave him a dose of Morphine for pain. His stats (heart rate, oxygen rate and respiratory rate) started dropping right away and he went into cardiac arrest. His heart stopped beating and he completely stopped breathing. They called a code blue and about 50 people came running. They had to give him chest compressions and ventilation tube to breath for him. They called for a drug that reverses the effects of morphine. They ran that up gave it to him and he snapped right out of it. He was stabilized and taken in extremely critical condition back to the Intensive care unit. That night he had a terrible time breathing. He would stop breathing for 30 seconds at a time, take about 6 shallow breaths and stop again. He did this for about 2 hours then he started to have mini seizures. The seizures lasted for another couple of hours, then as fast as all this came on it stopped. These were all terrible effects of the morphine he was given. It took about 15 hours to get out of his system. If that's not bad enough, during his code they accidentally yanked out the drain from his brain. So Monday morning (Christmas Eve) he went into surgery again to replace the drain. They gave him another narcotic drug named Versed which is a popular generic narcotic commonly used in surgery, they gave him the slightest dose and he started coding again. This time his heart didn't stop but he completely quit breathing. They had to stop the surgery and bag him again. They gave him the reverse drug for Versed and he again snapped right out of it. So in a nut shell, he cannot handle any form of narcotic. He does fine with general anesthetic but no narcotic drugs, which is so sad because we have several surgeries and he cannot have anything stronger than Tylenol for pain. The next couple of days (including Christmas day) he was considered in critical condition. He had to get a PICC line placed which is an IV that goes directly into his heart for medication and fluids, usually they put them under sedation but Carter cannot handle that because he had coded twice so they had to place it while he was awake, what a nightmare. It was the worst experience of our lives. We were then moved to a normal hospital room where we are just to bide our time here. He has to test negative of infection every day before they will put his normal shunt back in and we are on 7 days today without infection. We've had a few ups and downs in the past few days but nothing compared to what we went through the first few days. We will be here for 2 to 3 weeks this time. He's testing low for his blood count and just today received a blood transfusion and did awesome. It should give him more energy and make him feel better. He already looks much better. They are planning on replacing the shunt on Friday (Jan 4th) and if all goes okay we could be home by Monday. I'll keep updating this site through out the week. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers.