Aiden ended up not getting a bronchoscopy Monday morning as planned. Dr. Craig Futterman, pediatric critical care physician, decided that he wanted to do an ultrasound first to make certain the procedure was necessary. He performed the initial ultrasound himself and then called in Dr. Nakul Jerath, pediatric radiologist, to also take a look. Dr. Jerath noted pockets of fluid around the upper part of his lung. When examining the lower region, he observed the tumor occupying much of the space. After the procedure, Dr. Futterman and Dr. Jerath then consulted with the team of physicians treating Aiden. It was unanimously decided that Aiden did not in fact need a bronchoscopy. Since the bronchoscope would go down his trachea it would not be able to get past the mass. Plus, we already know that pockets of fluid are present; the bronchoscopy would duplicate efforts in that respect.
The best thing for Aiden now, is to get him breathing on his own. Even though his right lung is not able to expand yet – due in most part to the mass – his left lung is functioning very well. We are able to survive on one lung and it is believed that Aiden was doing so for a little while before we brought him to the hospital. Extubation should give Aiden’s lungs the opportunity to work and heal on their own. We expect much of the fluid to resolve with a little time and the mass should start to shrink, with the help of chemotherapy, over the next several weeks. His chest x-ray actually looked a bit better today (in the uppermost region of the lung) which is good news. Now we are finalizing our plan for extubation.
When Aiden was in surgery last Tuesday a central line was placed to make medication easy to administer. This made sense at the time since we thought we were dealing with an infection. His central line now serves a different purpose – chemo purveyor. Unfortunately, central lines are not permanent and can cause complications if left in too long. Since Aiden will require weekly intravenous medications, a more permanent port is necessary. A port is a very small medical appliance that is placed under the skin. A catheter then connects the port to a vein. Aiden will be going into surgery today to receive his port. As long as he wakes up well from the anesthesia, he will be extubated following recovery. I cannot wait to see his big brown eyes.
Following extubation, Aiden will be further weaned from many of his pain and sedation medications. This is a slow and sometimes unnerving process as he will be uncomfortable and likely not recognize us as his body goes through withdrawals. The doctors have reassured Chris and I that this is just temporary and our sweet baby boy will be back to himself very soon. As long as Aiden recovers well and we do not run into any complications, we should be moving to the Hematology/Oncology floor later this week.
Thank you again for thinking of us – especially my amazing baby boy. Your prayers are getting us through the difficult moments and helping us cherish every little miracle. The number of visitors to this blog as well as Aiden’s website never ceases to amaze us. Also, thank you all so much for joining his prayer circle on Facebook. We are just shy of 550 members, which is remarkable since the group was only created a few days ago.
More prayers are always welcome.
Leslie and Chris