Grace is still going well--just hanging tight right now waiting for a final decision on what they are going to do about her chest wound. The plastic surgeon called me yesterday afternoon and told me that they would do the graft on Monday and leave it on for 5 days and then reevaluate to see if Grace's skin took to it. If it did, then they would take her into the OR and take skin from her upper thigh and graft that in--then cross their fingers that it would work.
When we got up to the hospital last night we weren't expecting any surprises--but we got them anyway. First off their is a new Attending on and our nurse informed us that during rounds his intentions were to start moving Gracie forward by really trying to wean her off the vent. Luckily we had a nurse that knows Grace and told him--hey you need to take it slow with her and not rush things. So no changes were made to her vent settings until around 6pm--
The plastic surgeon stopped by Grace's room and informed us that he wasn't sure about doing the skin graft. He said that he is not it will take and that he would hate for them to take her own skin and not have the graft work. But he feels that she is healing so slowly and that they need to speed the process up. So he wanted to send her to the hyperbaric oxygen chambers--basically a chamber where patients sit and breathe in highly concentrated amounts of oxygen. I think this treatment is mostly used for those suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning. But Primary Children's does not have a hyperbaric chamber in their facility, the closest one is at LDS hospital. So if Gracie did go to have the treatments, she would have to be transported every other day by the Life Flight team via ambulance back and forth. Her nurse would go with her and monitor everything but it would be a process and frankly just too much for me to even wrap my mind around doing.
The surgeon also told us that in order to undergo the treatment he thought she had to be extubated--so the Attending (who was also in the room) said alright lets start weaning her and see how she does. Me, I'm freaking out as so many questions fill my mind--the biggest is my fear that it would be too much oxygen for her to be getting. I asked if they have ever done it with Hyperplast babies and the doctors didn't know--so they were going to talk to the cardiac surgeons and see what they thought and do some of their own research as well. Our nurse gave us some information on hyperbaric oxygen treatment for us to do our own educating on the process as well. After reading the first 5 pages of the document, I was already convinced that this procedure might not be the best thing for Gracie. The article stated that there was increased complications for those that have had chest surgery and it could have adverse effects on her lungs because it could increase the risk of "pulmonary oxygen toxicity" (whatever that is, though it doesn't sound good). All I could do was pray that Jason and I would be guided to know what to do for Gracie, that the surgeons would all do the same, and together we would do what was best for Grace.
After talking to the nurse this morning, during rounds the Attending said that the cardiac surgeons do not feel that the hyperbaric oxygen treatment is something they want to do right now. Apparently there wasn't any specific reason why, just that they didn't feel comfortable with it. Whether it is the transporting her back and forth or the actual treatment I don't know yet. So currently know one knows if she will still have the skin graft on Monday or what is going to happen. But they are still working on weaning the vent--please pray for Gracie. Part of me is excited that we are working to get her extubated but a bigger part of me is scared to death--its a long road!!