Thursday, September 27, 2012

Ups and Downs

Aside from a few hiccups and surprises, Norah did well in surgery. When we went back to the PICU to see her, she was in tremendous pain. Unfortunately, she has her daddy's high tolerance to pain medications. One of the docs said that there is most likely a genetic component to everyone's tolerance of medications.

When we were pre-op, Norah's ENT came in to chat with us. I asked if he could do a bronch to look down her airway since it had been awhile. Thank goodness for Mother's Intuition, because when he did during surgery, she had an enormous granuloma (a build up of tissue, which is an immune response to the foreign object - her trach) completely blocking her upper airway. He couldn't even get it all the first go-around so will have to go back in again soon, or it will just grow back. What would have happened if it hadn't been caught? Well, if her trach had come out and we couldn't get back in, we would have had no way to get air into Norah. None. Her upper airway was completely blocked, so even bagging would have been impossible. I think you can guess what that would mean if Norah had no way to breathe....

I stayed the night on Monday, which was a good thing because she had a really rough night. Then we spent Tuesday trying to manage her pain, and all but failing. Then she had a desat (blue spell) from a mucus plug. She was definitely showing viral symptoms so they sent off some labs. Sure enough, she came back positive for rhinovirus. Man rhino really kicks her butt in a bad way. I knew this would be bad.

On Wednesday, we finally figured out her pain meds. She was even playing for a little while and breathing easier. But I then noticed that she had intense right ear pain (from the new tubes that were put in). Hopefully ENT comes by quickly so they can peek in. Oh- and we had another desat when I picked her up to hold her. I sure hate seeing her turn blue.

This morning I called to check on her. Her nurse said that she was having some major respiratory distress- not unlike that which happened in July. She was clearly freaked out. I've learned that if you've freaked out an ICU nurse, that's a very bad sign. So she's getting albuterol and steroids to help out her lungs and airway. I'm really ready for her to get better. I hate that a little common viral bug puts Norah in the ICU for weeks.

The good news though is that her cleft repair looks good. Hopefully everything else falls into place soon too.
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