Greyson’s Heart Surgery

At our 20 week ultrasound with Greyson, we were told he would be born with Coarctation of the Aorta, a Congenital Heart Defect. We were sent to a pediatric cardiologist for more detailed ultrasounds during the remainder of my pregnancy. I can remember being so scared, confused, and worried during these ultrasounds. Towards the end of the pregnancy, we were told there was no sign of the Coarctation any longer and to be thankful our baby would be born heart healthy! We put it out of our minds and Greyson was born healthy on April 9, 2016.

He passed all of the newborn screenings at the hospital and had no problems during his first 5 months of life. Our pediatrician never gave us any reason to be worried and he grew well, so I never thought to have him checked by the cardiologist until around 5 months old. I had this strange feeling one day that prompted me to call our caridologist’s office and schedule Greyson an Echo and EKG. I actually felt embarrassed for making the appointment because our son was so healthy and showed no signs of anything being wrong. I was making the appointment based on a “bad feeling” only, and didn’t want to waste anyone’s time at the cardiologist’s office.

The day of his appointment is one I will never forget. The cardiologist gave us our worst nightmare and we were totally unprepared. Greyson was sick and needed heart surgery within the next couple weeks. He had Coarctation of the Aorta, which is a narrowing of the aorta that can cause heart failure in babies. The left side of his heart was already showing signs of overworking for the past 6 months.

Two weeks later we headed down to Columbus, Ohio to Nationwide Children’s Hospital. We went through pre-assessment testing the day before surgery and the wonderful nurses helped put our minds at ease for the first time in 2 weeks. Everyone was extremely helpful and knowledgeable about the procedure we were about to have done to fix Greyson’s heart.

The day of surgery was incredibly emotional. There is nothing that can prepare you for that moment right outside of the operating room when you have to hand your baby over to the nurses. Dr. Shinoka met us and reassured us a few minutes before the surgery. We were given updates via text message throughout the entire 5 hour process. Greyson did excellent. Seeing him for the first time in the CTICU was overwhelming. The nurses there did a great job showing us what each of the machines was for, and what each line and IV in Greyson’s body did. They took care of not only Greyson, but of my husband and I as well. There was always someone to check on us and make sure we had everything we needed too! We spent a total of 8 days at Nationwide and the care that our son received was nothing short of the best! He learned to crawl in our hospital room, just 2 days after having heart surgery. The nurses brought us a mat for the floor, and tons of toys to entertain him with during our stay. He could not have recovered as fast without all of the support and attention these ladies gave to him! We are so thankful and grateful to have had such a good experience during what was probably the hardest time in our lives. Greyson is 9 months old now, and off all medications for his heart. We hope he continues to thrive, but if his heart ends up needing more intervention as he grows, we will be happy to come back to Nationwide Children’s and see our favorite doctor’s and nurse’s again!

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  • Name: Greyson M.Greyson Mich
  • Condition(s): Coarctation of the Aorta
  • Age at Treatment: 6 months
  • Age Today: 04/09/20163 Years

At our 20 week ultrasound with Greyson, we were told he would be born with Coarctation of the Aorta, a Congenital Heart Defect. We were sent to a pediatric cardiologist for more detailed ultrasounds during the remainder of my pregnancy. I can remember being so scared, confused, and worried during these ultrasounds. Towards the end of the pregnancy, we were told there was no sign of the Coarctation any longer and to be thankful our baby would be born heart healthy! We put it out of our minds and Greyson was born healthy on April 9, 2016.

He passed all of the newborn screenings at the hospital and had no problems during his first 5 months of life. Our pediatrician never gave us any reason to be worried and he grew well, so I never thought to have him checked by the cardiologist until around 5 months old. I had this strange feeling one day that prompted me to call our caridologist’s office and schedule Greyson an Echo and EKG. I actually felt embarrassed for making the appointment because our son was so healthy and showed no signs of anything being wrong. I was making the appointment based on a “bad feeling” only, and didn’t want to waste anyone’s time at the cardiologist’s office.

The day of his appointment is one I will never forget. The cardiologist gave us our worst nightmare and we were totally unprepared. Greyson was sick and needed heart surgery within the next couple weeks. He had Coarctation of the Aorta, which is a narrowing of the aorta that can cause heart failure in babies. The left side of his heart was already showing signs of overworking for the past 6 months.

Two weeks later we headed down to Columbus, Ohio to Nationwide Children’s Hospital. We went through pre-assessment testing the day before surgery and the wonderful nurses helped put our minds at ease for the first time in 2 weeks. Everyone was extremely helpful and knowledgeable about the procedure we were about to have done to fix Greyson’s heart.

The day of surgery was incredibly emotional. There is nothing that can prepare you for that moment right outside of the operating room when you have to hand your baby over to the nurses. Dr. Shinoka met us and reassured us a few minutes before the surgery. We were given updates via text message throughout the entire 5 hour process. Greyson did excellent. Seeing him for the first time in the CTICU was overwhelming. The nurses there did a great job showing us what each of the machines was for, and what each line and IV in Greyson’s body did. They took care of not only Greyson, but of my husband and I as well. There was always someone to check on us and make sure we had everything we needed too! We spent a total of 8 days at Nationwide and the care that our son received was nothing short of the best! He learned to crawl in our hospital room, just 2 days after having heart surgery. The nurses brought us a mat for the floor, and tons of toys to entertain him with during our stay. He could not have recovered as fast without all of the support and attention these ladies gave to him! We are so thankful and grateful to have had such a good experience during what was probably the hardest time in our lives. Greyson is 9 months old now, and off all medications for his heart. We hope he continues to thrive, but if his heart ends up needing more intervention as he grows, we will be happy to come back to Nationwide Children’s and see our favorite doctor’s and nurse’s again!

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