This is a blog for my daughter Scarlett. She was born with a complex congenital heart defect known as Tetralogy of Fallot with Pulmonary Atresia. She is my little hero.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Heart Cath Tomorrow

Well, it is the night before Scarlett's cardiac catheterization and I'm feeling positive. I called the Pediatric CardioThorasic Intensive Care Unit (PCTICU) at St. Joe's to ask several questions about our stay tomorrow mostly focusing on breastfeeding stuff. I wanted to know: do I bring my own pump, or use theirs? Should I bring my own bottles, or use theirs? Should I bring my own breastmilk storage bags, or do they provide those? What about Nutramigen? What about Simply Think? What about her meds? etc. etc..

I decided that I'm just gonna take my own pump, my own bags, my own bottles, nipples, thickener, formula (for fortifying my BM), and her meds. I have my own special utensils that I use to crush her 1/4 aspirin (including the pill cutter, a teaspoon and a baby spoon for crushing). I recall the first time that the hospital didn't have a pill cutter or any sort of equipment for crushing her aspirin.

I packed blankets, socks, clothes and a portable DVD player for Scarlett. then clothes, socks, sweater for me because I remember how cold they keep the PCTICU. I know it's only for 2 days (and they might even send her home tomorrow!), but I have a lot to take with me for Scarlett even for a single overnight stay.
I have spent the night at my sister's house one time since Scarlett was born, and I had to pack all her stuff then, so I'm just doing that again. It's kind of pathetic that I can fill an entire suitcase of stuff for me and Scarlett for just an overnight much more will I need when she has her actual surgery?

We have to check in at 8am tomorrow. Her procedure is scheduled for 10am. (in 12 hours).Nothing by mouth after 4am. I'm starting to get a lump in my throat because I want to cry....but then I think why am I crying? She's gonna be fine!...but then part of me is still worried about the "whatif's".

The cath lab is reserved for 4 hours. I don't know if that's normal or not. Dr. Pophal has to go in, inject her with the dye and watch how well (or not well) the bloodflow is in her arteries. He is also going to cut off some Multiple AortaPulmonary Collateral Arteries (MAPCAs) if he has to, or bind them together and relocate them...he won't know until tomorrow when he goes in.

The PCTICU nurse said that Scarlett will be on the ventilator during the procedure. So she'll be intubated when she comes out of the cath lab. I also called another breastfeeding heart mommy (Radhika) and asked her about what she did with her BM when her son was getthing his heart cath. I still think it is so awesome that I have an entire network of heart mommys at my convenience. I am reallly blessed to be living in 2009. Well, I will post more before/during/after her heart cath. Good Luck baby girl... you'll do great, I just know it.


  1. I had no idea she was going in for her cath today! Keep us posted, and I will pray for her and YOU!

  2. I found your blog thru another heart babies blog.. I read your story below about your "high risk" dr. and how you hate them.. I feel your pain only I had close to 27 sonograms (high risk twin pregnancy) and nobody caught my little guys Tetralogy of fallot until after birth.. I Absolutely HATE that high risk group and so many days I want to send them a letter telling them how worthless they are. I haven't even been in for my after birth check up because I can't look the staff at my dr.'s office in the face for not catching this..
    I AM PRAYING FOR YOUR BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER TODAY!I hope all goes well! I will be looking for a update later :)

    Melissa Maccoy's mommy born 7-4-09 with Tetralogy of fallot


  3. We are praying for a good cath. I will be waiting to hear how it went! Good luck!

  4. Waiting to hear the news (and of course praying!)