Evan had his latest heart checkup last week. Not much has changed since his last one – at least, not physically. He still has three cardiac defects – a right aortic arch, double-chambered right ventricle, and most pressing, a ventricular septal defect (VSD). For now his heart, as his cardiologist describes it, is “skirting the line” – meaning the thin line between open-heart surgery and riding things out.
His right ventricle is enlarged because of the extra work it is doing as blood flows freely through his VSD. It is still within normal range, but just barely. If it gets even a touch bigger, and falls above the acceptable range, he will need open heart surgery to correct the VSD. So far, he has been lucky and avoided the surgery, but that could change at any time. Of course, he could also continue to skirt the line indefinitely.
What has changed is Evan’s realization that he has cardiac defects. This was the first heart appointment that he understood, as best as a three-year-old can, that his heart isn’t quite right. He had a lot of questions, but seemed to grasp that the doctors can fix his heart.
This was also the first appointment that Kate tagged along. She seemed completely unphased and had a blast keeping Evan company while we waited for his appointment.
As twins, there is no doubt they have a special bond, but seeing her tend to him while he underwent his testing was incredible. Evan was very nervous about his first unsedated echo – but Kate sat right next to him and held his hand while they watched Little Einsteins. She talked to him, made him giggle, and sensed when he needed a little extra love.
Barring any changes in Evan’s health, he has another year before we need to see the cardiologist again – meanwhile we will be praying that his heart continues to skirt the line.