Dec 19, 2017 Latest post:
Jul 14, 2018
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
Charles "Charlie" Christopher Dunaway was born on Wednesday, December 6, 2017, at 3:43 a.m. at the Ochsner Baptist Medical Center in New Orleans. He weighed in at 5-pounds, 3-ounces and was 18.3 inches long. Charlie is named in honor of his late grandfather, Charles "Chiggy" Rhodes, who passed away prior to Aimee's birth in 1976.
Charlie was diagnosed with a pair of heart defects, including a rare congenital heart defect called Truncus Arteriosus and a Ventricular Septal Defect. The latter is simply a hole in the ventricular septum or the muscle wall that separates the left and right ventricles (the heart's pumping chambers).
Truncus Arteriosus occurs when the two large arteries that leave the heart- the aorta and the pulmonary artery-- are combined into one large vessel. The Truncus Arteriosus carries blood to both the lungs and the body,
The good news is each of these defects are correctible but open-heart surgery is necessary. Both issues can be repaired in the same surgery.
Charlie began his journey in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Ochsner Baptist before being transferred to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) on the Ochsner Medical Center Main Campus. He stayed there for two days before being shipped back to Baptist, where he would remain until he gained exactly one pound. Sounds easy, right?
However, after two days Charlie had a minor setback with the performance of this heart and was immediately transported to the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU) main campus. Charlie was then flown to Texas Children's Hospital in Houston, Texas on Dec. 21.
Fast forward 177 days, four surgeries, two trips to the cardiac catheter lab and the emotional roller coaster of a lifetime, Charlie was discharged on June 15 and we returned home on June 18, exactly 180 days since our odyssey began.
We will continue to provide updates on Charlie though the daily journals. Please remember to follow so you will receive the daily updates.
Aimee and I would like to extend a sincere thank you to everyone for their prayers, support and love, and for the amazing care, Charlie has received from the doctors, nurses and staff at both Ochsner Medical Centers and Texas Children's Hospital.