Sunday, March 4, 2012

Operation New Lungs and Heart! Feb. 16-17

Here are the Sharlie's Angels facebook updates from the days of the surgeries.

The first update on Feb. 16 at 11:47 am
They've begun. The lungs/heart are a match. Now we pray and wait and pray.

Feb. 16, 2:41pm
UPDATE: The surgeons have successfully removed her old, well used, and well loved heart and lungs. This step was one of the significant hurdles given how compromised her chest cavity had become after her right lung collapsed back in high school. We're being told the new heart and lungs look beautiful. All is well.....all is well.

Feb. 16, 3:57pm
UPDATE: Shar's new organs are in place....her trachea and heart have been sewn in. Her lungs are next. Apparently they're on the large side.

We've learned the donor was an adult. We anxiously await meeting the donor's family to share our condolences and gratitude. We hope their pain can be lessened knowing their loved one gave life to another. I can't think of a more appreciative recipient.

Feb. 16, 4:34pm
UPDATE: All of her organs have been sewn in. Her lungs inflated "perfectly". Her bleeding is better than typical CF transfusions yet. The procedure has been smoother than they believed it would. Our next update will come from the surgeon after it's over....believed to be a couple hours from now.

Feb. 16, 7:10pm
Success! The head surgeon just came out and gave us the great news. Her heart is functioning well. Her lungs are already up to 50%, a level she's never been at before. They believe her lung function will rise as she heals. We'll have a better idea about the health of her new lungs shortly. We were able to see her for a short moment when they wheeled her out....she looked so peaceful. We'll be able to see her soon. We're so thankful for your love and support.

Feb. 16, 9:27pm
Sharlie is resting comfortably in the ICU. They'll keep her on the ventilator till about 6am tomorrow at which time she'll breathe on her own for the first time. She'll be able to converse a bit and, I imagine, shed a tear. 

Feb. 17, 7:39 am
Sharlie started bleeding around 2am last night. She was given transfusions and then a med at 6:30am. The med helped slow the bleeding, but an X-ray showed a pool of blood on the right side of her chest cavity. This pool of blood means she needs further surgery. They are taking her back to the O.R. as I type this. 
I'm receiving tons of information, most of which is difficult to process because I don't have a frame of reference. I keep asking "How worried should I be?" and "How common is this?"
Her surgeon said we shouldn't be overly worried and that this is somewhat common, but this is a reminder that this will be a long road with potential setbacks. We're not completely out of the woods yet. Please continue to pray.

Feb. 17, 10:52am
The second surgery was a success. The source of bleeding had closed by the time they opened her up. The pooled blood was removed and they made sure there were no other sources of bleeding. The surgeons are very pleased with what they saw and how it went. They hope to wake her in a couple of hours to breathe on her own. Progress.

Feb. 17, 12:41pm
We just visited with one of Sharlie's surgeons at her bedside. He called her new heart and lungs "pristine". They had to turn down her oxygen while we were in there......she was providing more than they thought she would be:) She'll be extubated/awake in a couple hours and they'll have her sitting up before the end of the day.
“Hope is the companion of power, and mother of success; for who so hopes strongly has within him the gift of miracles.”

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