At 20 weeks pregnant, we found out our sweet boy would be born with half of a working heart. He has a congenital heart defect called hypoplastic left heart syndrome, in which the left ventricle never fully developed, meaning his heart would not be able to pump blood to his lungs once he was born.
Many people have asked us what this means for him, and what the surgeries would accomplish, and if he could be “healed” or “fixed”. Elijah has undergone one out of the three stages of surgeries needed in order to re-construct his heart to allow blood flow to get to and from his lungs without using the left side of his heart, and without overwhelming the right side. He will be having his second surgery in December.
The surgeries are not a cure, but a palliation. Currently, the right side of Elijah’s heart pumps mixed blood (oxygenated and non-oxygenated) to and from his body AND his lungs, which is due to a temporary fix provided by the Norwood/Sano Shunt procedure. The next surgery (at 4 months of age) will be the Glenn procedure, which is the next step to re-constructing his heart and re-directing blood flow, allowing blood to flow to his lungs while bypassing the left and right ventricles altogether. Blood will flow passively from the top half of his body to the lungs by disconnecting the inferior vena cava from his right atrium and attaching it to the pulmonary artery.
By the third surgery, (the Fontan procedure, around 4 years give or take), blood flow to and from Elijah’s lungs will bypass the heart altogether and flow through a conduit connecting to the pulmonary artery and resting just outside his heart.
Elijah is so strong, and has overcome so much in his short 4 months with us so far. We have absolute hope that he will continue to fight and beat odds left snd right. God is going before, behind, above, and below us.
Please join us in praying over our sweet little guys life! ❤️