Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Wake Up Call

After visiting our friends at the NICU reunion on Saturday, I was surprised to hear how many of the babies had problems after coming home from the hospital. Even a few of the babies who soared through their time at the NICU had been checked back into the hospital for various reasons. We have been so blessed to have Suzie thrive since she's been home. She hasn't had any problems with feeding, breathing, or even so much as a cold! We are so thankful for the good health the Lord has given her.

Yesterday morning, however, we received a bit of a wake up call. I took Suzie into the Neurosurgeon for a cranial ultrasound just for a follow up. On my way there, I was praying that everything would go okay, but I don't think I even considered there being a possibility that there might be a problem. But after the doctor looked her her ultrasound he told me that he thinks her shunt might not be working properly. Her ventricles were much larger than they should be and her head size has gone from the 2nd percentile to the 60th percentile in a matter of a couple months. He did a tap on her shunt and drew out a small amount of fluid. The fluid was crystal clear, which is a very good thing, as opposed to when she was in the hospital and the fluid was a dark amber color because of the bleed in her brain. He then took off the syringe attached to the tube going into her shunt and watched the fluid drain. He said that it was draining at an okay rate insinuating that the shunt is working properly. Therefore he thinks that there might just be a partial obstruction or an obstruction was there but has now cleared. He decided to wait a month and have her come back in. If her head size and ventricles have increased, he will have to operate.

If they end up needing to operate, they will open up her original incision on the back of her skull. There is an 85% chance that the problem is the valve, so they could just replace it and be done. If the problem is not the valve, then they would have to remove the entire shunt and replace it.

After being out of the hospital for almost seven months, I have become so complacent and started to take things for granted. All the fears that we had in the hospital came flooding back to me and I began to hurt for my little girl. This is a reality that she will have to face for the rest of her life. The possibility for emergency shunt surgery could happen any day in her life. The doctor told us to cross our fingers in hopes that the issue would resolve itself, but we know that we have a much greater hope than that. We have a God who is both in control and completely good. He knows our needs, He hurts with us, and He will never put us in a situation that is not best for us. I am already seeing that He is using this to cast me down at His feet in surrender to Him.

Please join us in praying for Suzie. Pray that if the Lord wills, He would allow the obstruction to clear up on it's own so that she does not need surgery. Pray for wisdom for the doctors and timeliness to catch it quickly if she does need an operation (a month seems like such a long time to wait!) We would also ask for continued prayer for her development, as this is a reminder to us of the brain damage that she suffered at birth. And of course, please pray that God would use this for His glory and that we would respond in a way that is pleasing to Him and for us to have a strong testimony.

Thank you so much for thinking of us! We are SO abundantly blessed!


Mrs. Dan said...

I'm praying for you guys! I totally know what you mean about it being harder to go back. May God's will be done... and may you have the strength to continue doing the wonderful job you've been doing.

Nathan said...

Tough news. I feel badly for Suzie who, as you said, will have to live with this for the rest of her life. Thankfully for her, she's got great, supportive parents. That'll go a long way toward keeping her spirits up as she gets older.

Michelle said...

We will definitely be praying for Suzie and you both! Our God is greater than we can imagine and can do more than we think or ask. But we will be asking that He will allow this problem to go away without any more sugeries! We love you guys :)

Mrs. Jorgenson said...

I will be praying for Suzie and for you and Kyle! Thinking of you! Love, Anna

Cherie said...

You and Suzie are in my prayers. What a beautiful little girl she is. It's such a comfort to know that God is in control.