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.
As most of you know, Gessel suffered a bleed in her brain on Thursday, May 11, 2017. The bleed was caused by and arteriovenous malformation, or AVM. It is something that has likely been there her entire life and just now became weak enough to rupture. The rupture of the AVM caused blood to bleed out into her brain. The area of the brain affected was the cerebellum, which controls motor movement, balance, and such, and also affected was the brain stem, which controls life functions like breathing and heart rate. This happened while she was at school. She was taken to the hospital, where initial tests were done and she was then rushed to Harborview Medical Center where they did surgery to relieve the pressure on her brain. The following day they did another procedure to prevent the AVM from further bleeding. Gessel remains in the pediatric ICU at Harborview. She has a breathing tube right now (18 May) to help her keep her airway clear and is on lots of other meds. The medical team at Harborview is incredible and is doing their best to help her. They have tried twice to take the breathing tube out and get her off the ventilator (breathing machine), but both times have had to replace the tube. She just isn't ready to do it on her own yet.
I know the big question you all have is when is she going to be out of the hospital and is she going to be ok? The thing with neurologic/brain injury is they just don't know. People have such different outcomes and you cannot predict what her outcome will be. The brain is a very sensitive organ that doesn't like to be messed with. We just have to wait and see how she does. We are all praying for the best for Gessel and for strength and patience for those that love her and want her back.