Cori Lou was born at 8:04 AM on September 26 with an omphalocele and a non-critical ventricular septal defect (VSD). Otherwise, she looks healthy and strong. Her color is good and she is breathing well. She is in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) while they test for other problems sometimes associated with her condition. Her mother is recuperating from a less than perfect experience with anesthesia. The doctors did a good job dealing with unexpected responses to medication, but it has made recovery a little harder. Plus, she is in a different part of the hospital, so going to see Cori Lou takes some coordination and energy. She has had some very good support from lactation specialists and is working hard to be ready to nurse Cori Lou when the baby is allowed to feed by mouth.
- Is a portion of Cori Lou’s abdomen that did not close properly during development in the womb, so some of the abdominal contents are poking out, covered by a membrane. This appears to include the liver, maybe some intestines.
- Is smaller than the doctors thought it might be, which means it is “less” of a concern to repair.
- Does not seem to be bothering Cori Lou or causing her discomfort.
- Is covered with a dressing that is designed to keep it just moist enough, but not too moist.
- Has some skin part way up the sides of it, but it is the muscle growth underneath that is of the greatest concern.
- The abdomen may not have been stimulated to grow enough to easily stick those parts back inside without causing distress to the lungs, so they will wait a few days for the lungs to get stronger before they do surgery.
- After surgery, Cori Lou will need to be on a respirator for an undetermined amount of time to help her lungs deal with the added pressure of more in the abdominal cavity.
- Cori Lou will not be eating by mouth, except for possible occasional dribbles of breast milk with a syringe, until she has stabilized after the surgery. It would not be good if her abdomen got distended in any way.
- That is why she has the thin blue tube going down her mouth. It is suctioning air out of her gut that all babies swallow as they cry and suck
- Is a space in the wall, or septum, between the two pumping chambers of the heart (the ventricles), that did not close completely.
- This is not causing Cori Lou any distress at the moment.
- In a few months it could grow closed more or she could start experiencing fatigue from inefficient blood flow.
- This would be most noticeable in interfering with her ability to coordinate sucking and breathing, thus inhibiting her growth.
- IF this is the scenario, she would quite possibly benefit from heart surgery.
- Although pediatric cardiac surgeons are very experienced with this type of surgery, it is not done in Idaho, so there would be travel involved.