Friday, August 16, 2013
This was one tough kid!
Luckily for me, the surgeon was full of answers. As he started to speak, I couldn't help but notice how exhausted he looked. His shoulders look tired from holding up the weight of Christopher's world for the last 4+ hours. It turned out that the problem started when the feeding tube that they had put in Christopher's intestine had somehow punctured through his intestine. That meant that all the Pedialyte, formula, Tylenol, and water that we had given him through his feeding tube didn't go into his intestine. It had gone into his Peritoneal Space. The Peritoneum is the free space surrounding the organs in the abdomen. It is NEVER okay to have these fluids in this part of the body. The result was a very serious, life threatening infection called Peritonitis. Christopher was in very critical condition.
The surgeon explained that after making a full length incision on Christopher's abdomen, he discovered the problem. He removed the old feeding tube and repaired the hole in his intestine. Then he put in a new, VERY pliable piece of tubing that we could use later to tube feed him. In order to help get rid of some of the infection, the surgeon dowsed Christopher's entire abdominal cavity with several liters of sterile saline. He didn't close the incision with stitches. He left it open in order to allow the body a way to expel some of the infection. The surgeon explained that over time the incision would have to heal itself from the inside out. He put Christopher on some very heavy IV antibiotics to help combat the infection.
Christopher would be in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit for at least a week, maybe more. He would need specialized, intense care. The surgeon went on to say that the mortality rate for this type of infection was quite high. There was a strong chance that Christopher might ultimately die from it. He had done what he could, but there were just no guarantees. Only time would tell. The first 24 to 48 hours were the most critical.
He tried to lessen the blow by adding that Christopher had a very strong mental and physical constitution even at only 4+ months of age. It was amazing that he had even lived to see the operating table. He probably should have died long before the surgery. The fact that he was not in the best of health before the infection, should have left him without the strength to fight it off. This was one tough kid. He doesn't give up.
I wanted to know when I could see him. The surgeon told me that in a few minutes an intensive care nurse would come out to tell us how things work in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. Apparently, they had some pretty strict rules.
I picked my jaw up off the floor, thanked him, and shook his hand. He left the room as quickly and quietly as he had entered it. All we could do was look at each with relief and disbelief on our faces, but a daunting uncertainty still hung in the air.
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can pray like this: