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Thursday, February 23, 2017


Today was Holly's yearly routine cardiologist appointment.
As a refresher, Holly has two Congenital Heart Defects.  The first being a PDA - in simple terms, a hole in a baby's heart that is supposed to naturally close after birth but does not.
Although Holly's PDA was not life-threatening, it was determined that she needed to undergo a procedure to help close the gap.  Typically, inserting a small coil device via heart cath would be sufficient, but in Holly's case, the hole was on the larger side and a plug was needed.
The second heart defect is Pulmonary Valve Stenosis - a narrowing of the pulmonary valve which carries blood from the heart to the lungs.  To fix this problem, a balloon is inserted (via heart cath) into the pulmonary artery/valve to stretch out the valve to a more appropriate size.
Both procedures were done in August 2014.  The PDA has completely healed itself now and her body has become one with the plug.  The routine visits are for the stenosis issue, to be sure as her heart grows that the valve grows with it.
That brings us to today.
At the hospital, the first stop was, of course, the bathroom.  And, of course, Holly asked where we were.  Tears were instant the moment I said 'Doctors.'  

She was so mad she refused to talk, look, or sit by me in the waiting room. 
Until I busted out the IPad and started watching her videos. 

I did not get any pictures of the next part as this child was clinging to my hands every moment, but I am happy to report that Holly did allow the nurse to take her blood pressure, oxygen level, get her height, and her weight!  That is quite the improvement!!  It was not without tears and wailing, but she did it!!  AND she scored herself a new kitty for it too! 

But she was still mad at me. 

Until she got bored. 

The doctor came in to do his part of listening for the murmur and sending us on our way for our yearly ECHO.  And you might have guessed, more tears ensued.  BUT BUT BUT!!  She got to watch Doc McStuffins!


With the exam and ECHO over, all we had to do was wait for the results.  This was very happy making - for both of us. 

Holly's valve gradient (which is the severity of the narrowing) last year was a 15 on a scale of 60.  A 'mild' case.  No biggie. 

Today's gradient has her at a 20 now.  A 'mild plus' case.

What does that mean? 
Nothing.  For another year.  If we go back next year and her numbers remain the same, it is more of nothing for another year.  But if we go back and her gradient is even higher, there is the possibility of having another balloon valvuloplasty in the future.  The overall point is - she's fine, she'll be okay, nothing we have to watch for.

But every now and then if you can remember to send up a prayer for her, that would be most appreciated. 

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