More Details

We were pleasantly surprised Saturday morning when the doctor came in and said Jerard could go home with a heparin lock to continue the IV medicine through this coming Friday.

He was seen by an immunologist the day before discharge.
The doctors are wondering why, when he gets one illness such as a urinary tract infection, his whole body becomes ill and he ends up with meningitis or sepsis or ventricleitis.
He will have blood work done on Wednesday for an immunoassay test. The blood will be sent to Manila for testing and we will receive the results in 3 - 5 weeks after testing.

At this time, the one shunt in Jerard's head seems to be handling the draining of the ventricles. He is on a medicine that decreases the amount of cerebral fluid being made so when that is discontinued in a few days, then we and the doctors will have a clearer idea if the one shunt is handling everything or not. He will be closely monitored by the doctors for the next 3 - 4 weeks.

If the one shunt is not handling all the drainage then there would be a need to put in a second shunt.

So tomorrow I will blog about the activities of our other kids.

Keep us in your prayers. It is really nice to be out of the hospital.
Jerard has spend 49 days of his young life in the hospital so far.

Jerard is Home

Quick update: Jerard just came home from the hospital an hour ago. More details to come soon.

Jerard's Smile

Jerard's Smile

Jerard playing. Note his hand has actually grabbed a toy. He spent an hour this morning actively playing with his toy gym!

Jerard's Progress

Yesterday (Sunday), for the first time ever in his young life, Jerard reached for a toy on purpose and smiled as he did so.

This is good progress for him and a good sign to let us know he is seeing!

He has also started to 'coo' a little bit when being talked to! Another step in 'normal baby development', and a good sign of healing and brain growth!!!!

He has another 6 or 7 days of IV antibiotics to finish up.
Wednesday and Saturday he will have cerebral fluid taken out of his shunt to test for infection.
The first sample came back with no growth in the culture.
If the next two come back 'clean' also the doctors will know the infection has been taken care of.

There is still no decision as to whether or not he needs another shunt implanted.
The shunt that had been put in for the cyst seems to have taken over the job of draining his ventricle system cerebral fluid.
His head is not enlarging since the removal of the first, infected shunt.
We should know by next Monday if he will need another surgery.

Thanks for your prayers on his and our behalf.
These long hospitalizations can be very trying on all of us!
But these 'trials' are also very fertile ground for God to teach us lessons He wants us to learn about his faithfulness and mercy; about prayer without ceasing; about walking in his peace in the midst of storms; about patience; about his strength shining through in our weaknesses; and about his love!
More on all that later!!!!!!

James at 5 1/2 Months of Age

James, the healthy twin brother of Jerard, is growing and learning like any normal 5 month old boy. As a Filipino he is a little smaller than some non-Filipino 5 month olds, but developmentally he is doing just fine.