Yesterday was another whirlwind of a day! We got all the pre-op stuff done yesterday and it was a lot more than we expected. Caden was home last night and will be going into surgery this morning to get a pacemaker implanted. We will arrive at 10am with the surgery starting at noon. It should last about 3 hours and they suspect he’ll go to the PCICU for recovery.

We have wrestled all afternoon and night with a BIG decision to make. The heart surgeon is leaving the decision on whether to go forward with the artery up to Sherry and I at this point and it is a VERY tough decision. This procedure would re-rout or clamp off his left subclavical artery away from his esophagus (since he will already be under anesthesia and he’s the one who would work on it). If you remember we found out about this back in January. Here’s the link to that post and there is even a photo of his throat.

We have been told there is a 50-50 chance of the artery procedure helping Caden’s swallowing. Other than this procedure, ENT is at a “wait and see” spot not knowing where to go from here in regards to swallowing. There are a few slight risks to the procedure (less than 1%) and the heart surgeon has performed the procedure before though never for swallowing. It would mean that Caden would get another incision, in addition to the two incisions for the pacemaker, and that it is pretty painful (it’s called a thoracotamy spelling? under his left arm). The doctors say, it also means a little longer hospital stay. We have talked to 4 doctors and they all come back with an undecided response and have even said they could argue the case from either side. We have sought Christian council, even medical, and are praying for God’s will be shown to us and that we’ll know His will with peace that passes understanding. Please pray for us this morning if at all possible. We have talked and prayed together some more tonight and tomorrow. We have not made the final decision yet.

Thank you for your prayers.

Hank and Sherry

  • Anonymous

    Hank and Sherrie,

    Not that it matters much but I feel a peace about Cadens procedure. He is going to have pain but this pain will not even be a memory one day when he is living a normal life and smiling every time he looks at you guys.

    We love ya.


    cjjiv and the crew