Surgery started, then stopped

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Matthew went in for surgery this morning at 7:00 a.m. and things started out well, but didn't finish that way. After he was under anesthesia and intubated, the doctor made an incision in the eye and as soon as he did that Matthew stopped breathing. But if Matthew was on the ventilator, how could he stop breathing, right? We asked the same question and it looks like Matthew had a bronchospasm and a neurological response or a vagal response as soon as the doctor made the incision in the eye. This means that he had a neurological response that made his chest lock up or not move so the ventilator couldn't breathe for him. He had the same reaction to fentanyl (a pain med) that they had given him in the past. At that point, the doctor decided not to go any further with the surgery. This was a good thing too because once they got Matthew breathing again and he went in to close up the incision he made, the exact same thing happened. From what I understand, it was an automatic neurological response (kind of like when the doctor tests your reflexes by hitting your knee with his hand...he hits it just right and your leg didn't make the leg move consciously, it just happened) They say this is not a good thing, but it can happen in some cases. Fortunately, they told us that his heart remained strong throughout the entire time. So needless to say they are going to try the surgery again in about 7 to 10 days from today. I believe God answered our prayers with the doctor's decision to stop the surgery. We prayed and asked God to give him the wisdom he needed to make the right decisions today and I feel like he did. Imagine if we had a gung-ho doctor that wanted to keep going... Anyway, Matthew was extubated around 1:00 and is back on nasal cannula at a tenth of a liter at 55% oxygen. They stopped his feedings at midnight last night because of the surgery but are going to slowly get him back up to his full feeds again.

Now to catch you up on everything else...before surgery, Matthew was up to 60 ml's of breastmilk every 3 hours. That was beyond his "full feeds" total of 49 ml's every three hours. So far he was tolerating the feedings, pooping on his own and he was testing negative for blood in the stool every time they tested it. Unfortunately, Matthew was not gaining a lot of weight on just the breastmilk alone, so they did start adding more vitamins and fortifiers to the breastmilk to help add extra calories. So far he seems to be tolerating it but of course only time will tell. Let's keep praying that he tolerates the feeds with the fortifiers in it.

I have worked with the occupational therapist several times in trying to get Matthew to take the bottle, but it turns out that he is actually doing better on the breast than he is on the bottle. Yesterday Matthew latched onto my breast and suckled for about 15 minutes. He was getting milk and was swallowing and breathing too. But near the end he was getting tired and then he choked and he dropped his heart rate and his oxygen saturation. When that happens we have to stimulate him by rubbing his back or slapping his back to get him to breathe and bring his heart rate back up. It worked, but as soon as that happened, he vomitted all over me. What a joy it was to be wearing overalls that were open, so when he threw up on me, it went down inside my overalls, all over my legs and on the outside of my shirt!! What fun it was!! (welcome to motherhood, huh?)

I worked with the physical therapist and the infant development specialist yesterday to test Matthew's muscle tone and to work on exercises for him to help build strength. They were very pleased with the results they were getting from him and they both thought he did exceptionally well.

His direct bilirubin levels are starting to go back up again, but now that he is off of the IV nutrition, it could be awhile (even a couple of months) before they come back down to normal. He is still getting medications to help his bilirubin levels come back down to normal limits.

I was able to give him a bath yesterday and he absolutely loved it, so did I!! We had a lot of fun.

Jason and I are doing okay. I was at the hospital yesterday for about 14 hours only to come home, sleep, get up and leave the house by 6:00 a.m. today to do it all over again. I am feeling pretty tired today, but did take a break so I could get things squared away with insurance stuff and other things like that which couldn't be put off. Jason and I rejoiced at the fact that Matthew had his 4 month old birthday yesterday (he should have only been 11 days old) kind of weird to think of it like that. We are getting tired of having him in the hospital and of having to be down at the hospital every day and are anxious to have him home. What a great thanksgiving present it will be to have him home with us, if he is able to be.

Please keep praying for Matthew, for the doctor's and nurses, all the various therapists, and for us. Thank you for the comments on line, cards in the mail and all of your wonderful words of encouragement. We really do appreciate it!


Wow! Thats kind of scary! Praise God that he's in control of Matthews outcome. We're so thankful that matthew is able to breastfeed and keep his feedings down. We will contiue to pray for you both to have endurance and peace to contiue on. We will also continue to pray that God will contiue to watch over Matthews body, and to provide wisdom for the doctors decisions regarding Matthews care.
The end is near! We are confident that Matthew will be home with you soon. We love you guys so much. Love, Seth, Dawn, and Andrew ( and Tucker the dog).

I am totally confident that Matthew will be home for Thanksgiving. Truly what a Thanksgiving it will be to. God can truly work miracles and you three are living proof. Please keep the faith November 27th is just around the corner. One day at a time. God thank you for this family and the story they have brought to tell. Keep them strong and believing that you will prevail.

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This page contains a single entry by Jenn published on October 22, 2003 4:27 PM.

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