A lot has gone on today but not a whole lot has happened. There seems to be some very cautious optimism coming from the doctors as a few things have gone Charlotte's way today. Lactates are down, urine production is up, and the bleeding has not increased. These are all positive developments and hopefully are not simply an artifact that comes along with using ECMO.
It has been a long day of waiting. The coming and going of Charlotte's team of care givers certainly slowed down as we moved through the day. We started off with fairly frequent visits from Dr. Mendeloff and Dr. Fanning but as they grew more pleased with what they saw from Charlotte, we got to see a little less of them. Dr. Stegall is on tonight and they are going to try to back her off of ECMO just a little to see how she reacts. Even if she tolerates doing a little more work on her own it will still be a few days before they would take her off of it completely. They just made the first reduction in flow and everything looked ok on the monitors but the true measure will be the lab work that is run about 4 to 6 hours from now (it's currently 9:30pm Central). Of course, all of this is moot if the sono tomorrow morning indicates that the bleeding in her brain has increased (it remained a grade 2 as of this morning which was great).
We are in a complicated relationship with ECMO right now. It is really giving Charlotte a nice break and has certainly helped her situation over the past 24 hours but we know that Charlotte is going to need to do this on her own at some point. Its hard to know that you can't get too excited about the small victories that are happening right now because there is a time approaching very quickly where ECMO will go away and she won't be able to rely on it to help her out. I don't know if that makes much sense to people but it really is an odd feeling.
So, things are good right now and we are cautiously optimistic about what will happen over the next day or two but there is still a nagging fear in my head that I am going to look up at some point and see more than 2 people standing in my child's room.