Miss Samantha is having a terrible time with her chest tubes. Yesterday the right tube got dislodged somehow (perhaps during an x ray) and they had to replace it (again). Then last night, they noticed that the replacement tube was not secured they way it should have been and was coming out. They became very concerned because where the tube was and where the holes in the tube were, she was getting some air in her lung. They took her down to PICU (Pediatric Intensive Care Unit) last night to remove it and be able to keep a very close eye on her. With the tube out, she could re-accumulate enough fluid to put her back into respiratory distress, and they couldn't just replace it easily because Interventional Radiology (where she has had the tubes put in) are not in the hospital overnight. However, she had a good night and the x rays have shown that she isn't re-accumulating fluid right now and the little bit of air that she did get into her lung has absorbed. She is doing very well right now.
I spoke with the surgeon in charge of her case this morning and he is speaking with some of his colleagues about which course of action they should take. He is hopeful that they will not need to replace the right chest tube because the x ray didn't show fluid build up in the 5 hours the tube had been out. I am not as hopeful because she has not had even one day of the right one decreasing in the amount of fluid, never mind stopping altogether. However, it is possible for this to be an answer to prayer. Meanwhile the left lung has doubled in its fluid output over the past day. Sigh.
I am waiting to see what the surgeons will decide to do, but when our surgeon left our room this morning he was leaning more towards leaving the tube out for a day and seeing if it will re-accumulate. If it does, then they will put in bigger chest tubes (so hopefully they won't get clogged again) and suture them to her chest to secure them. And they will move towards surgery. He may decide, however, to put tubes in no matter what this morning, because he agrees the chances are pretty high that she will re-accumulate the fluid. We will keep you posted. We are pretty certain that she will go to surgery probably on Monday at this point. it is in the Lords hands.
We are in the PICU until they decide what they are going to do (tubes or waiting). If we are waiting, we will go back up to our regular room, and if they put tubes in, then will go back up to our room after they put the tubes in.