Today at Sheba hospital was the much anticipated echo-cardiogram for Dina. In the words of her cardiologist, Dina is a miracle after surviving a deadly heart infection which ruptured her aorta. But today, the doctor said that this is the best condition she has seen Dina in so far, and since she will not need another surgery for the near future or possibly ever, her treatment here is done.
Her mother was very appreciative of all the work accomplished on her daughter’s behalf, and she understands how miraculous it is her daughter is still alive. It has not been easy, but today was joyful as Dina’s condition has improved over these months and can now go back to Kurdistan where she will report to a local hospital as the doctors at Sheba recommended.
Please be praying for Dina, she was very sick to begin with, but a complication that occurred after her third surgery was the onset of small seizures, which she is on medication for. She will be flying back to Kurdistan with Nate and Colin as medical escorts.
On the recommendation of the Sheba hospital doctors who discharged Dina, we are to bring Dina to the emergency room in the event that she has a seizure. She is currently on two medications to help with this possible condition.
Today, in the afternoon, as I was going through Dina’ medications with her mum, Dina went very rigid and her face turned blue. For a few seconds, she was completely frozen. Her mother said that this was one of her seizures; it has been complicated for the past few weeks with trying to care for Dina at first in the hospital, and now at our community house, because Dina’s mother is insistent on returning to Kurdistan, so she was reluctant at first to go to the hospital at all.
She finally agreed to go on the condition that Dina won’t be admitted. Admission to the hospital is what the doctors recommended as soon as we got there, but they understood that she would not consent. The neurologist added a new medication to help control the seizures. So please be praying for little Dina. Please also be praying for Dina’s mother as well.
After many hours in an isolation room and all the morning at the house together, we got home from the hospital at 11:30 at night, brought Dina her medicine, made her milk, and tried to make sure Dina’s mother ate something. I needed to go sit outside our house for a few minutes for some time.
As I sat there, a small phrase came to mind: remember why you came here. Before I knew any Kurdish and could barely communicate in Arabic, before I considered the staff at Sheba my friends and knew the hospital well, before all of this, I came here because of something, because of someone. I came for love. I believed that Jesus on the cross is the ultimate expression of love, and somehow I knew that meant for me that I needed to come to serve at Shevet. Dina’s mother has been through a lot, and as I think we don’t really get to choose the parts of ourselves that we lose along the way in grief, even if it’s not death but other circumstances that cause the loss of something in our lives, we all want to do what is right but can lose our footing. In this difficult case, please pray for all of us here at Shevet to choose kindness, gentleness, compassion, and understanding, especially for Dina’s mother. Pray that she will choose what is right by Dina despite her knowing well the austere and lonely offices that love demands.
And let’s remember especially little Dina, whom the doctors and nurses have worked so hard for, that she is taken care of properly and given a future and a hope.
Her mother’s heart is really set on going home, but of course the doctors want to be thorough in their care for Dina, remembering that she is in a relatively fragile condition. Overall though, she is looking very lovely, especially noticeable is her weight gain.
Dina is being closely monitored by Sheba hospital in these past days to try to keep her progressing slowly. The milk she is receiving from a feeding tube has slightly increased and she is receiving a new medication to treat seizures which have recently started.
I met Dina just as she was returning from a CT scan of her heart. Her mother spoke about how she was disheartened that because of the bacterial infection in her heart, little Dina has required three surgeries so far for her heart.
Dina’s mother pointed out the oxygen tubing, nasogastric tubing, and also the tubing connected to two chest drains. She spoke of how weak Dina was now.
However, we hope that Dina’s mother can see past all the tubing and the difficulties Dina is facing, and look ahead in hope for her recovery. As co-worker Sabrina mentioned in the previous blog, we hope that Dina continues to recover “step by step.”
Please continue to pray for strength for both Dina and her mother, both are very tired.
Yesterday, co-worker Georgia received a call from Sheba hospital that Dina was very unwell, requiring resuscitation and emergency surgical intervention due to bleeding most likely caused by the infection in her heart that she has been battling.
Dina is now in the intermediate department of the Pediatric ICU at Sheba hospital. We explained to Dina’s mother that although Dina was moved from the ICU to the intermediate department of the ICU, and although this is a reflection of Dina’s graduating to a better condition, it’s still considered a part of the ICU.
We hope this week Dina will receive a special type of canula that will consistently feed antibiotics to her system for the next six weeks, as the infection from her heart is still being treated.
Please pray for our lovely Dina.
Dina was brought into the ICU at Sheba hospital and reintubated yesterday evening. She had appeared to be recovering well, but then she developed a high fever. She has signs of infection, for which the doctors need to wait for some days to see what happens with the blood cultures.
It’s also possible that one of the valves in her heart is not working well. All in all, she is stable, but not very well. The doctors need more time to see the outcome of her assessments and the development of her condition, but it is possible that she may need another surgery.
Her mother is quite worried, especially to see Dina looking so tired and weak, especially after it had appeared that Dina was recovering well.
Please keep praying for lovely Dina.
sidered by a plastic surgeon for her lip repair. After many more months, she could have the soft part of the palate repaired, and then after some years, to be considered for a repair of the hard part of her palate. There are other surgeries which could be considered in her teenage years for her teeth and jaw.
Dina has been one week in Israel, and her mother has concern her condition is worsening. As Dina has a cleft palate, she aspirates during most feedings. Because of this, she is constantly at risk of a chest infection and contracts them frequently.
Compared to her first appointment last week, there were not changes in Dina’s chest x-ray and echo. The ER doctor said something before we finished there, that I hoped was quite encouraging to Dina’s mother. He said that although they didn’t find anything new in Dina’s tests today, he still believed Dina’s mother when she said she thought her daughter has gotten worse.
Therefore, they will follow-up tomorrow with Dina’s doctor at the cardiac clinic. This is the kind of excellent care the doctors at Sheba routinely give. Here, these families are honored and taken seriously.