This was a long day. This was a day containing the good, the bad, and the ugly. The good is that Jacob now has ear tubes! Jacob was so very, very close to developing cholesteatoma, which is an evil cyst "eating" up your ear including your hearing. The surgeon told us that if we would have waited another month, Jacob would have developed the cyst, and we would then have been looking at a 5 HOURS surgery rather than 5 minutes surgery. "And that (cholesteatoma surgery) is a conversation that I never ever would like to have with you", said Jacob's surgeon. We have not been followed by ENT for years, but we're now adding that back to the mix of specialists that will frequently monitor Jacob's ears and making sure that the ear tubes don't fall out. We also found out that Jacob probably hasn't had much hearing on his right ear for quite a while. We are told to be a bit careful with noise in the coming weeks, since Jacob has gotten used to hardly have no hearing on that impacted ear.
The bad thing is that Jacob didn't like 5 minutes of anaesthesia a single bit. As they brought me back to Jacob, he was awake, but didn't breathe on his own. The nurse was doing a jaw thrust on him in order to keep his airway open. We were told to give Jacob time, but no matter how many hours past, he couldn't breathe on his own. The bi-pap was rolled into the post-op unit. It got better, but he didn't take breaths on his own, he needed the bi-pap to give him the pressure to open up his airway. His oxygen started to dip. His secretions were excessive. It was time to give deep suctioning a try.
And now to the ugly part. Deep suctioning doesn't bother me much after years of doing it daily on Jacob. This time, Jacob had no cough. Instead, he choked on his secretions badly. He desated to an extremely low oxygen level, and if I say Jacob was blue, he was blue. Before I knew it, the nurse hit the wall button to call a full code on him. Within seconds, I think we had 20 people around his bed working on getting his breathing back under control. No intubation was needed, but he gave us all quite a scare. This is not the first code for Jacob in the hospital. It has happened enough times for me to not remember how many he has had in his life. But this is one of those things that you can never ever get used to. You know it is deadly serious. Too many things happen within seconds, and there is not enough time for your brain to process them all in the moment. I feel I have pretty good nerves, but this one gets me every time.
After the code, we got some actions to get Jacob to the PICU. He wasn't safe in the post-op unit. The anaesthesiologist made one call, and off we were to the PICU!
The first thing the resident said when she entered our room is that she wouldn't allow Jacob to stay as long as he did in the fall with his colitis! I completely agree. I had started to wonder about Jacob's increased secretions and breathing issues, and wondered if he possibly could have caught Sarah's cold that has kept her home from school the last couple of days. PICU got their act together right away, and ordered labs, and a chest x-ray as quickly as only the PICU can.
Since Sarah was sick today, I couldn't leave Jacob side for 12 hours straight today. Joakim and I both had a kid to watch over. When Joakim came to trade with me, I was exhausted. Rush hour traffic didn't help. No matter how tough the day has been, Sarah is always enlighten my day. We had good conversations over dinner, and Sarah finally was feeling better herself.
And my little stinker...he sure missed his dad today! Jacob seems to not be sick after all, but just have had a severe reaction to anaesthesia. Tonight, he is off bi-pap and breathing with just the help of a little oxygen. He is back on feeds, and seems to be doing pretty well. We can now only hope for a quiet night in the PICU, and maybe, maybe taking Jacob home tomorrow.
Today brought back to me how fragile Jacob is. I was worried about his surgery, but was thinking that maybe I was just a little bit out of surgery practice. After all, most kids go home an hour after ear tube surgery. For our boy, it meant he just couldn't breathe on his own, and a full code is just not something you want to ever be part of your day.
So, join me in hoping for a quiet night in the PICU, and Jacob being back to normal tomorrow!
Thanks everyone for your endless support for Jacob and all of us. It is very much felt.