Friday, August 9, 2013

Friends Friday - Ashley 8.9.13

Let me introduce this lovely lady. Her name is Ashley and she blogs over at The Hooah Life.
She is an Army Wife and new momma of baby Cayden. (Who is ADORABLE)
But there is something special about Cayden and Ashley is here to tell you about it...


Hello Everyone! I'm Ashley over at That Hooah Life. First and foremost, I want to thank Kayla for letting me guest post on her blog. I'm an army wife, full time nursing student, beachbody coach, and a new full time mommy (: My little Cayden was born three weeks pre mature and had quite the journey on his first couple weeks of life. You can read all about those days here if you'd like. Anyways, he was born with VSD and mild PS and since Congenital Heart Defects (CHDs) are the number one birth defects world wide, I'd like to take a second and tell you about them.

VSD, Ventricular Septal Defect, is a hole in the lower part of his heart between the two lower champers. This causes blood from the left ventricle to leak into the right ventricle which in return puts more than normal blood into the lungs. That then causes fluid to build up on the lungs and the body to be at a shortage of blood.

PS, Pulmonary Stenosis, is a thickening of the pulmonary valve. This causes the blood flowing to the lungs to be restricted.

In my little man, these two things are sort of working together in a way. VSD causes the extra blood flow to the right side of his heart and the PS constricts SOME of that blood flow from getting to the lungs. He is taking medication to limit the fluid on his lungs, being watched very closely by a pediatric cardiologist and currently stands at a 50/50 chance of open heart surgery.

The two defects that my child has are only a couple forms of a CHD. There are many many more! Like I had stated before, CHDs are the NUMBER ONE birth defects in the world. One in every 100 babies is born with a heart defect. Not only that, they are the number one DEATH RELATED birth defects in the world. What's even more scary  is that a lot of these defects go undetected for weeks, months, or even years. Some people don't even find out until they are well into adulthood. Here's the thing that really gets me, more children die from a heart defect than they do from every form of child cancer combined, yet funding for pediatric cancer research is FIVE TIMES higher than funding for congenital heart defect research... Correct me if I am wrong, I may be a little bias, but funding for CHD should be just as equal if not more than funding for cancer.

When I had Cayden, they knew he had a small heart murmur but it wasn't until two weeks later at a visit to the ER that we found out about what was actually going on. Scary huh?! You have no idea. Anyways, there is this little piece of equipment that has actually been proven to pick up on a defect of the heart and for some stupid reason, it's not manditory in every state to have these little pulse ox's. Check out this site for more information and a heart rinching video.

If you'd like to know more about anything, I've seriously become an expert on the subject, so please don't hesitate to ask. And you're more than welcome to follow along with Cayden's journey and our journey as CHD parents. (:

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