Monday, 19 March 2012

Open Heart Surgery

So when I say it was a BIG week in the Hart household this past week.. that is an understatement  Abbey's heart surgery was looming and we had the 4 cancelled surgeries from last year hanging over us like a dark, heavy cloud.. what was going to happen..

This was scary stuff we were dealing with.

Well I am extremely happy to report that surgery went ahead as planned (woo hoo) and everything went exceptionally well.  Open heart surgery on Tuesday and discharged from hospital on Thursday (yes 2 days later..) Who does that??

Abbey had what is called an ASD - Atrial Septal Defect.  It was picked up when Abbey was 22 months old. What.. the Coeliac Disease wasn't enough?? Sheesh.

The atrial septum is the wall that separates the left and right atria.  These are the two upper chambers of the heart.  This keeps the oxygen rich blood separate from the oxygen poor blood.

An ASD is a hole situated in the wall between the left and right atria of the heart.  The hole allows some blood to flow from the left atrium through to the right atrium then into the right ventricle and back to the lungs.  Blood from the lungs returns to the left atrium where again, the hole allows some of the blood to flow back into the right atrium and the cycle repeats.  This causes an extra load to the right side of the heart and can result in an enlargement of the heart muscle which was the case with Abbey. (This explanation care of Matters of the Heart - Fact Sheet #3 Queensland Paediatric Cardiac Service not from my own profound medical knowledge.. sorry to disappoint)


Abbey really is a remarkable young lady.  So much already taken on in her young life, she is a fighter, she is courageous, she is resilient..  I cannot think of enough appropriate adjectives to adequately express my admiration and love for this child of ours.

Thank-you most sincerely to Kelly - our cardiac liaison at Princess Margaret Hospital, our surgeon Mr Andrews and all of the exceptional nursing staff in ICU & on the ward.  What would we do without you?  The world truly is a better place because of people like you.

But wait.. a complaint? Abbey had apparently grown quite fond of the "boom tisha boom" and feels a little ordinary with the "boom boom boom..."  You are kidding right Abb??