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.

Systemic Bacterial Infection

Jerard's cultures show that the infection has spread to some of the cerebral fluid in the ventricles (but not the cyst) as well as his urinary tract. So, the infection is systemic. The doctors have prescribed two stronger anti-biotics for this infection. They are trying to get on top of this infection before it develops into full blown meningitus.

Post-Surgery Update

Jerard was restless and slept uneasily during his first night after surgery due to pain. They have been giving him pain medication which helps a lot. He is eating well and he looks good. He had a fever during the night of 38.5 degrees Celcius (101.3 Fahrenheit).

He was running a fever before surgery due to the infection and that was the whole reason for the surgery, so our prayer is that the fever will pass as the anti-biotics take effect.

Surgery Results

Beth just came back from the operating room where the doctors talked with her immediately after the surgery. The surgery went well. The first shunt was removed and the infection appears to have been limited to the outside of the skull around the shunt. They are running cultures to determine if there is any infection in the cerebral fluid. It will take a couple days for those results to come back.

In the meantime, the doctors are hoping that the remaining shunt will be able to drain the cerebral fluid for all of the ventricles. Whether that is the case or not should be evident within about 4 days or so. If the remaining shunt does not properly drain all of the ventricles then another operation will be required to install another shunt.

Please pray:

  • That Jerard's infection clears up soon.
  • That the current shunt is sufficient for draining the whole ventricular system.
  • That Jerard's brain continues to grow.
  • That the hospital stay is no longer than it needs to be.