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PICU, Day #12 – Liver Involvement and ChildLife

Posted May 29 2010 6:01am

I went down this morning during shift change (7 am) to check on Hannah.  They ran liver function tests (LFTs) at 4 am, which was scheduled yesterday from rounds.  They were concerned with chloral hydrate’s affect on the liver since that is where the chloral hydrate metabolizes and since her liver is still mildly enlarged from her Gaucher’s.  Three of Hannah’s numbers came back abnormal.  I don’t know to what extent (I will learn that in a couple of hours when they do rounds), but I know that GGT was one of them.

However, Hannah’s GGT has always been slightly abnormally high as well as another value was slightly higher than normal when she had her liver function tests a few months ago.   So I am hoping when they compare the two, the values will be less skewed than what they were originally concerned with.

On a separate note, a ChildLife services came to visit with Ethan and Abigail when they got here after school yesterday.  She brought two “trach dolls” with her, and she, in a kid-appropriate conversation, explained to the kids what Hannah will likely be getting.  These dolls had real trachs and straps on them, and the kids got a chance to see what they looked like, play with the suction catheter just like we would be suctioning, etc.  They were able to keep them as well.

Abigail asked a lot of questions, very mature questions.  You can tell she has a medical mind.  I mean, what 6-year-old asks “So this trach will help her lungs do the work that her throat is not?”  Ethan didn’t ask anything.  He soaked it all up, but you could tell it was a bit uncomfortable for him.  They each got to keep their dolls to bring home.

ChildLife really helped us bring up the conversation to the kids.  Even if we end up not traching Hannah (which in my mind, I feel we are going to), they will have the exposure with it.

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