January 4th, or four days before Joel’s birthday

We went to Atlanta today for a second biopsy of Stephanie’s liver.  As you probably know, during her previous biopsy and MRI’s, a mass was found on Stephanie’s liver.  At last update they did not think it was malignant, but they wanted to do a second biopsy just to make sure.

Today’s biopsy was more intensive than the last one, and Stephanie did well (other than a severe case of nerves the night before).  Preliminary results are very promising, and we will have the pathologist’s report back tomorrow.  At this point the cardiology team felt confident enough to schedule the surgery for January 12th (next Tuesday).

We will need to be at Emory next Monday for pre-op, and the surgery will be on Tuesday.  For the first 3-4 days, Stephanie will be in the surgical ICU, so during that time, visitors will be limited to just immediate family.  Due to the H1N1 flu, no children under 18th are allowed to visit patients in the hospital.  This is partially for their protection, as H1N1 cases have been pretty heavy at the hospital.  This is going to be hard for Stephanie, as she won’t be able to see Jack or Chloe during her hospital stay, but thank God for Skype and wifi.

The doctor is expecting it to be very intensive in the short term, and said that we should expect there to be complications and blood transfusions, but feels that the recovery prognosis is very good.

Things to pray for:

  • People who have open heart surgery typically suffer from strong anxiety and depression for 2-3 months afterwards, but then it gets better. 
  • Coordination of child care, especially during the surgery time

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