I ride in honor of our son Logan and all of his doctors, nurses and other caregivers at the Children's Hospital, who will forever be an inspiration to us.
Logan was born at 9:05 a.m. on Sunday, September 27, 2009. After a normal first couple of days in the hospital, and shortly before being discharged, a nurse detected an abnormal murmur that they decided warranted an echocardiogram (a form of ultrasound of the heart). When the results were back, we received the dreaded call that Logan had heart defects and needed additional testing.
The following day, we met with Karrie Villavicencio, a pediatric cardiologist at the Children's Hospital. Karrie has, since that day, been Logan's primary cardiologist. We are so lucky to have found her that day, as she has turned out to be the most caring and compassionate doctor that we have ever encountered. One top of that, during last year’s Courage Classic, we ran into Karrie on course, riding her bike to support the hospital and all the kids who she cares for!
They completed another echo, as well as two EKGs and various other tests. The evaluation confirmed the findings that Logan had two congenital heart defects. The first, a Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD), is a hole in the septum that separates the left and right heart ventricles. The second, pulmonary stenosis, is a narrowing of the valve to the pulmonary artery from the right ventricle that restricts blood flow from the heart to the lungs.
The VSD was large enough that it would not have closed on its own (which smaller holes sometimes do) so would need to be surgically repaired. Addressing the issues was not urgent, and they initially estimated that surgery would be necessary in about 2 or 3 months.
His first month was relatively uneventful until October 29th, when he developed an arrhythmia (Ventricular Tachycardia) that resulted in a trip to the ER. Fortunately, Logan tolerated the episodes relatively well, with rapid breathing and a high heart rate as his only noticeable symptoms. He was admitted to the Cardiac ICU at Children's, where he stayed for 5 days. They were able to correct the VT with medication, and he has had no episodes since.
Logan was otherwise doing well, gaining weight and eating/sleeping/crying as a normal infant. In mid-November, Logan's doctors determined that there were no longer any reasons to delay the surgery, so the procedure was scheduled for December 3rd. However, he soon thereafter contracted a respiratory infection that delayed things a couple weeks. So the waiting continued.
The big day was rescheduled for December 15th. The surgery was set to begin at 7:30 a.m., and was expected to take 4-6 hours. The plan was to patch the VSD and repair the pulmonary valve (with specifics dependent upon what they found). The surgery was a COMPLETE success - they fully closed the VSD, and the repair to the pulmonary valve went better than the surgeon had even hoped.
Today, Logan is a happy and healthy 8 year old, and all follow-up visits have been great. The expectation is that, although he will be closely monitored for the rest of his life, he should have no significant long-term issues. Logan will be riding in his second Courage Classic this year, so look for him on the course! THANK YOU CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL!