Friday, 6 December 2013

Extubated

After the debacle on Monday I wasn't holding out much hope that anything would happen on Tuesday. The late night ward round discussed leaving Martha be on Tuesday to recover.
We arrived on the ward at 9:15am - she was fasting again. I was immediately on the defensive - I could see that the same thing would happen again, nothing!!!
The consultants and registrar were in and out all day tweaking the ventilator settings, reducing the pressure support, reducing the oxygen concentration and reducing the breaths per minute the machine was giving her.
3pm made it 6 hours since she started fasting and the Consultant called me in for a chat. He explained that
from a respiratory point of view there was nothing keeping Martha on the ventilator, she was taking enough breaths for herself and coping well. They were happy to extubate.


What they couldn't guarantee was that she wouldn't revert to Atrial Flutter. If that did happen she would be straight back on the Vent again while they investigate why the left side of her heart can't cope with the extra work.
I was petrified, I felt sick, as a parent the fear grips you like a vice when your child's life is potentially in danger.
I went to the Hospital canteen and tried to forget about what was going on upstairs in Flamingo. I didn't want to return until I could be sure that she was either safely off the Vent or she had been re-intubated. After an hour and a half I couldn't hide any longer and we made our way back.
I sent Nan in first, I waited by the entrance for her to come and tell me it was safe. She nodded at me to come over.
She was still Ventilated - they hadn't even tried to extubate yet...they had decided to do their ward rounds first. I was angry. She'd been fasting for 7hours and I had a gut feeling they were going to leave her over night again.
At 7:30pm it was finally Martha's turn. Suddenly it was action stations and I ran out of the ward as fast as my legs could carry me. I didn't even want to be in the building while it was happening.
Nan and Grandad took us out to Dinner and did their best to try to distract me, but my mind was somewhere else and I could hardly eat.
We made our way back to GOSH and again I sent Nan in with Grandad. I waited in the parents room.
10 minutes later they came out with the biggest smile across their faces.
She was off the Ventilator and on CPAP and coping beautifully.
I kissed them goodnight and went to see for myself. My beautiful brave girl breathing for herself.
But it wasn't over yet. I was still afraid of her heart reverting to a flutter again. We stayed with her 4:15am until I was happy that she was coping and even then I wasn't happy to be leaving her, but I needed to sleep.
She's had a pacemaker check yesterday and I'm happy to say that she still isn't in a flutter.
So that's another hurdle she's gotten over.

GM 
x