Follow-ups and Surgery

It has been a busy month already for us!

Early last week, Mary had her one year follow up with Cardiology. She had an EKG done and then we met with the cardiologist and his two doctors-in-training. They each took turns listening to her heart and all heard the same thing: a healthy heart. As far as the doctor is concerned, he sees no need to continue seeing her for follow-ups and thinks the hole did close (though an Echocardiogram is the only way to know for sure ($$$)). If another doctor hears something concerning later on, they will continue care but see no reason to at the moment. We were very relieved to hear that!

Later on the same day, we met up with Ophthalmology for her follow up. The only concerning issue was her watery eyes, which were caused by blocked tear ducts. He suggested doing a tear duct probing to clean them out and then putting stints in for 6 months to keep them open. We agreed and they scheduled the procedure for the same day as her ENT surgery.

Two days later, we were back. At her last ENT appointment, we had scheduled for her to have ear tubes put in both of her ears. She had already had several rounds of antibiotics and the ear infection was not abating. That combined with fluid building up made tubes a necessity.
Surgery days make for a long day. We had to get there an hour and a half prior for pre-op paperwork and procedures. It was a lot of talking with nurses, verifying the procedures being done, talking with the anesthesiologist, and waiting. One of the things they did that I really liked was that they gave her an anesthesiology mask to play with. We could put it her over mouth and let her feel what it would be like, and she could play with it and treat it like a toy. That way, when she was being put to sleep, it wasn’t such a scary thing.
When the time finally came, they brought us back to the surgery room and had us hold her while they put her to sleep for the surgery. She tried to lick the inside of the mask because they flavored the gas. I think the fact that she was used to the mask and that it was nap time made it easy for her to fall asleep. We placed her on the bed and gave her a kiss before we went to the waiting room. It wasn’t long before we got called into another room for an update (we were told by many that this doctor is fast). The surgery went great, though the fluid in her ears was very infected. The doctor described it as “the consistency of Elmer’s glue”. She also said that the benefit of the tubes is that the antibiotic ear drops she prescribed will be able to go straight to the infection. She then told us to sit tight and the other doctor would be in shortly.
It was probably 20 minutes and the Ophthalmologist came in to let us know that his surgery went well too. He was able to probe the ducts and get the stints in. He told us that the stints may come out on their own, and if so that is ok. If they do not, return in 6 months and he will remove them.
It was another short wait until they called us back to her room in recovery. She was still not fully awake but awake enough to be cranky and whining and crying. The moment I picked her up, she curled into me and quieted down. She still had her IV line and monitors on her so it was interesting trying to maneuver around those too. We stayed in recovery for awhile until she calmed enough to get dressed and we were free to take her home.
The rest of the day consisted of giver her the eye drops and ear drops she was prescribed and lots of cuddles and naps. The next day, she was back to acting like her normal self: smiles, laughs, and trying to steal food off our plates. We’re hoping these two surgeries really help her and keep her healthy. And hopefully, the last ones she will need.

Mary waiting for her surgeries

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