Today, Hana went a full 24-hours without vomiting. It’s strange to think that this is something to be happy about! The big event today was Hana’s first checkup at Stanford after being discharged from the hospital. As is the new usual, it took quite a long time to get out the door for the appointment. But we got there, got settled and one of the fellows from the CVICU walked in to start her exam. I was glad to see a familiar face. While she was doing the exam, Hana vomited! It got all over the front of my shirt. I really wasn’t that much vomit (well, not compared to the other times). I was actually glad she vomited, so that the doctor could see, first hand, what was going on.
After calming Hana down (not from vomiting but from getting her clothes changed) and completing the exam, the fellow physician left to talk to the attending physician. They both came back and we talked with them for a while. The conclusion for this visit is that Hana is still doing amazing. Everything looks great. She is gaining the right amount of weight (too little and it would be a problem, too much and it could just be that she is retaining fluid). We should treat her like a normal baby (except maybe avoid prolonged bouts of stressful crying, but what parent doesn’t want to do this? For me, this means we probably won’t be choosing the “Cry It Out” method of sleep training). She should do all the normal baby things (except breastfeed or take a bottle, but perhaps that will come in time). They will continue to watch her very carefully and when she gets sick, like normal children do, we may have to watch her more carefully than a normal-heart child.
On the topic of vomiting – it could just be part of her new baseline. Some kids throw up (spit up) a lot. It doesn’t seem to be caused by a failing heart. It could be her NG tube. It could be what seems to be a very sensitive gag reflex. It could be air from the feeding pump. They prescribed her some Zantac to see if that helps, but even if it doesn’t, they don’t seem to think it is a big deal. Other than that first night home from the hospital, the vomiting doesn’t seem to bother her, she goes back to being her normal self. Her lungs sound clear. They did go over the signs with us if things change.
We all felt relieved after the visit! It was a good day! The people at Stanford are really great! We all feel comfortable with my mom going home on Saturday. It is still going to be a lot of work as I get settled into a new routine, but I think if I can get some help in the beginning especially, it is definitely manageable.