Less than 24 hours after his birth, our big, beautiful, and seemingly healthy baby boy was diagnosed with critical Pulmonary Valve Stenosis and was quickly transported by the Flight for Life crew from Boulder Foothills Hospital to Children’s Hospital Cardiac Intensive Care Unit.
Liam’s pulmonary valve was mostly closed, which obstructed the blood flow from his right ventricle to the lungs. His oxygen level was dropping, and his skin tone had started to change. We were assured that Liam “should be fine”, and that he couldn’t be going to a better place than Children’s Hospital. We were obviously terrified for our less than 1-day old baby and feared the worst.
During Liam’s first several hours at the CICU, we were greeted by multiple doctors, nurses, and other specialists, all of whom took time to describe their role and function in Liam’s care, explained his condition and options for treatment, and most importantly, they made sure that we knew how much they cared about Liam’s health, well-being, and safety.
“We are going to treat your baby like he is our own child” is the heart felt sentiment there, and we can’t tell you how important that part was for us, and more importantly, for Liam.
During the first 8 weeks of his life, Liam had two week long visits to Children’s Hospital CICU. At 2 days old Liam underwent a balloon valvuloplasty procedure to open up his pulmonary valve, and then several weeks later, Liam returned for open heart surgery to remove obstructive muscle tissue in his right ventricle that was causing his heart to work too hard.
Thankfully both procedures were successful, and we are grateful that Liam is a happy, funny, wonder-filled 6-year-old boy (and amazing big brother) who navigates his world without limitation. We feel so blessed to have him as our son…and that we get to see him grow and thrive in the years to come.
We also feel blessed to have access to the amazingly competent and caring team at The Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital…an organization that will forever be a part of Liam’s life, and one that we plan to support in their mission of helping babies and children like Liam, and their parents, find their way to healthier, happier lives.