But I figured that since I have a lot of free time today, I would email
everyone with a quick update. Today is Zoë's big day: surgery. I arrived at
the hospital at 5am and we had Zoë down in Pre-op by 6ish. I feel so bad for
her, not because she has cancer, per se, but that she was so hungry that she
started chewing on her shirt.
We met with the team of doctors and then it was quickly off to OR for baby
girl. Its been a waiting game from then on out.
The other day, Laura and I had a sobering conversation with the surgeons.
I personally felt that Laura and I would heroicly go in the office with the
surgeons and give them permission to be as aggressive as they needed to be to
get the cancer out of her. And then we hit a solid wall. It hurt a lot. I
expressed my concerns with the chief of surgeons at Children's (who incidently
is personally doing the surgery. He is world renowned and his credentials are
about as long as a football field.) He answered my question, and added what
really concerned him. Apparantly the tumor is so large that it is enveloping the
aorta, the inferior vena cava, and all the rest of the major blood supply to the
lower limbs. Why hadn't I thought of that before? Small infant, huge
Another concern that he had was that when we brought her in to the
hospital, she had a lot of fluid free floating in her abdomen. He said it could
be that part of the tumor ruptured and that is what caused the fluid. If that
happened, then the tumor can reseed no matter what they do and will probably
return at another date. However, it could have also been that because the tumor
has also enveloped the right ureter, the plumbing between the kidney and the
bladder, and was not allowing her kidney to drain properly...that it was really
draining directly into the tumor and had no where else to go but inside her
abdominal cavity. The last thing that concerned him was that because the CT
scans and the MRI's could not get the microscopic pictures of the space between
the tumor and the abdominal lining, they did not know if the tumor has already
grown into that the abdominal wall. That is probably the worst case scenario.
When they start the surgery, they are going to make a small incision and take a
look to see what the extent of the damage has been. If it has grown too much,
and feel that they cannot help her, they will stitch her up without proceeding.
Well, as I am writing this email, I've been interupted several times. Once
to see if I would like to buy a cold sandwich off a cart that looks like it was
at some point used to move dirty trays to the kitchen and once by the nurse
liason. I am so happy to include in this email that the nurse liason told me
that after taking a look at the tumor and the shape of things inside a little
tiny girl, that they are indeed going to proceed with the surgery. I don't know
what that means at the end of the day, but for now, it is great news.
Thank you for taking the time to read this long email. Please, if you have
a chance and want to follow our progress today, go to our website and send your
love and prayers through facebook. Seems cliche, but it gives us hope when we
check our facebook pages and see so many people changing their profile pictures
to one of Zoë Young.