I hate to do this to you, but it’s gonna be another photo-less post. I am working on another photoblast, but in the mean time, I thought you might like to know how Leah’s day went.
To refresh your memory… Leah’s swallow study indicated that she had a stricture, or a narrowing of the esophagus at the surgical site, which was preventing food from passing safely from the esophagus into the stomach. They resolve this issue by inserting a balloon via endoscopy to stretch out the surgical site and allow food to pass through.
For a couple of hours earlier this week, it looked like Leah’s procedure this morning might be postponed for a bit, but her doctors sorted out the confusion and she arrived at the hospital at 6:15AM this morning. YES. 6:15. AM. The plan was that she would be admitted following her procedure so that they could monitor her overnight, since she’s had difficulty with extubation the past few times she’s been on the ventilator.
The procedure started a little over an hour late, so we spent a good portion of the morning trying to distract Leah from the fact that she’d had food withheld since 2AM. When we spoke with the doctor he told us that he would keep her overnight for observation if they had to dilate, but that if there was no need for dilation then she would likely go home after the procedure unless there were any problems.
The procedure took maybe 45 minutes total, give or take a few. By the time Leah came back to the recovery room, there was a whole new set of plans. Leah was not kept overnight, but she does have a stricture, and a dilation was necessary. But that’s not all. Leah is now scheduled for a dilation every two weeks for the time being, until they are able to get the constricted portion of the esophagus to the desired size. They were able to dilate to 6-7mm today. They want to get to 12mm. We are still in the learning process for this new complication, so I’m not sure what that means relative to a “normal” esophagus or how long they anticipate it will take to get her to a comfortable place. I’ll let you know when I know!
After the procedure, LeahBug was Pretty Freaking Cranky until she had her lunch. She has this special way of crying and babbling angrily at the same time that makes you feel like you can actually hear profanities as she yells. That’s the yell we got when she woke up and realized her tummy was on Empty. Whew. All things considered, though, she was actually pretty pleasant. Once she had some food in her, she calmed down and even took a few catnaps. Our big strong girl barely cried when they took out the IV (although I’ll admit that feat took a lot of Glowworm songs and Mama-dancing), and by the time we actually left the discharge area she was smiling and giggling. Sweet girl.
SO. That was our very long day. We are all exhausted, and I’m not quite sure how we’re still awake at 10PM (so I apologize for any incoherence – I’m operating on very, very little sleep!!!). I will post photos soon!