Ayleen's Heart Surgery

Kurdistan, northern Iraq

Free to Go Home!

Posted on Wed, 06/21/2017 - 03:05 by Helen Byler

After bringing Ania and her mother to the hospital, we went to see Ayleen and her mother in the children’s ward, where Ayleen had spent the night after a successful cath yesterday. Ayleen was sleeping soundly and her mom wanted to go shopping, so Shea stayed with Ayleen while Stefania took her mom to the shops in the hospital. We had to call them back when Ayleen woke up inconsolable. She calmed down as soon as she came back and was soon happily riding her tricycle around the hospital halls again. We received word around 11:30 that they were free to go home! Suhail drove Ayleen and her mom back to the house, and they are settling back in. They received good news at the hospital: Ayleen’s surgery will hopefully be on the schedule in the coming weeks! Join us in praying that Ayleen can finally get her surgery, and that all will go well. 


Cath Procedure Goes Well

Posted on Mon, 06/19/2017 - 22:20 by Taylor Green

Ayleen had some waiting today until her cath placement in the late morning. She had a very good attitude for not being able to eat or drink until after her procedure. She spent much of the morning making hospital staff smile by tricycling around the ward. She even shared her tricycle with another patient. 

There was a lot of screaming as she was taken into the procedure room. This was a little upsetting to her mom but she was able to pass the time with some shopping in the hospital bizarre. She found a new toy, Hello Kitty bag, and outfit to surprise her daughter when she woke up. 
Ayleen's procedure went very well. When she woke up there were a lot of tears and she really wanted some water. Her mother was so happy and supportive to her daughter. When we left, Ayleen was fast asleep. 
Please pray that there are no complications with the cath so Ayleen can be discharged as planned tomorrow. 

Ayleen Admitted

Posted on Sun, 06/18/2017 - 21:56 by Helen Byler

Ayleen was admitted to Wolfson this afternoon for her catheterization tomorrow. She wheeled into the children’s ward on her tricycle, already crying in anticipation of her tests. The nurses started the tests right away; she cried a lot but a lollipop helped a little.

It was hard on her mom to see her cry so much as they drew blood, but it only lasted ten minutes or so before they were done and Ayleen was given a bed. We changed her into hospital pajamas and got Ayleen and her mom settled in, then went on a hunt to the cafeteria for pudding for Ayleen. She was almost asleep when I got back with pudding but perked up quickly and enjoyed playing with the squishy toy that I brought while her mom fed her the pudding. When we left they were settled in and resting. The nurse said that hopefully the cath will be at 7 tomorrow morning. Pray that Ayleen and her mom can rest well tonight, and that the catheterization goes well tomorrow!

Cath Cancelled

Posted on Wed, 06/14/2017 - 21:15 by Rebekah Yang

This morning when I arrived to the hospital, I went to check on how Ayleen and her mum were doing. Right after I saw them, Ayleen's mum looked very upset to tell me that Ayleen's catheterization had been cancelled and she was informed by the Arabic speaking staff just now.

I was quite shocked so I went to the ward to double-check with Dr. Yueval. According to his explanation, there were a few urgent kids who needed to have a cath more emergently than Ayleen did. As a result, there wasn't enough time for Ayleen. So, Ayleen's catheterization is cancelled and will be resecheduled later. 
Please continue to lift up Ayleen and her mum while they have again to wait for Ayleen's cath. May Yeshua provide mum peace while they're waiting for God's perfect timing.

One Step Closer

Posted on Wed, 06/14/2017 - 00:58 by Ruth Zellweger

Ayleen and her mother have been with our Jaffa community for the past eight weeks, waiting for Ayleen's surgery to be scheduled. Since their arrival they have joined many farewell parties, and have seen other children undergoing open heart surgery. Of course this has not been easy for Ayleen's mother. With each passing week it became harder on her. Nevertheless, she does not give up out of love for her little daughter.

Last week we were informed that Ayleen was scheduled for a heart catheterization this Wednesday. We did not really understand the need for a catheterization, nor why only after nearly two months of waiting. Yesterday Dr. Alona took some time to explain. The medical team had discussed Ayleen's heart repair. Because her right ventricle is not completely functioning as it should, they would like to take a surgical approach that would bring some relief for the right ventricle. Thus, the hope is that they can create a shunt between the vena cava superior (large vein that returns deoxygenated blood to the heart from the head) and the pulmonary arteries. By creating this shunt, the blood would flow passively directly to the lungs, bypassing the right heart, which then only has to cope with the blood coming from the vena cava inferior (large vein that returns deoxygenated blood from the middle and lower body to the right heart). In order to do this procedure, they first have to assess the resistence in the pulmonary arteries, which is done via catheterization. If the resistence is too high, the blood could not flow passively to the pulmonary arteries and into the lungs, and Ayleen's heart not suitable for this specific procedure.

After some hours of uncertainty this morning if Ayleen would indeed have her catheterization tomorrow, she was finally called in for admission to the ward. Before she and her mother left, our community gathered around mother and daughter and prayed for them. And off they went.

We are thankful for the caution the doctors are taking to give Ayleen the best heart repair possible. This catheterization is an important step in their decision making process in how to best approach the repair. Thank you for praying with us for the medical team and Ayleen and her mother. May God's will be done in their lives.


CT Scan for Ayleen

Posted on Thu, 04/27/2017 - 23:44 by Rebekah Yang

Early this morning David and I accompanied Ayleen and her mum to Wolfson hospital in order to have a CT scan done. The results of the scan will help the doctors determine their plan for Ayleen's medical treatment.

Ayleen was required to fast since last night before she went to bed. We thought she should able to finish CT soon after 8am, and that Ayleen wouldn't soon be able to eat again. However, this was not the case. After some time of waiting, I asked Dr. Eve when she thought the CT might happen. I found out that there was another seriously sick baby who needed to have a CT done urgently. Ayleen was next in line.
To help pass the time, Ayleen's mum brought her to the playground and Ayleen had lots of fun playing while she waited.  Around 11:30am, it was finally time for Ayleen's CT.
In the CT room, the doctor sedated Ayleen to ensure she would not move during the scan. Shortly after it started, Ayleen's mum began shedding many tears because she was so worried about Ayleen.  
When it was finished, they kept her for a period of observation before taking her back to the children's ward. Later on, Ayleen and her mum had lunch with Maryam and her mum and also spent some time playing together.
Praise God, that afternoon Ayleen was released to come back our Shevet community. Thanks to our Messiah for his protection over Ayleen's CT scan! 

A Challenging Day

Posted on Thu, 04/20/2017 - 22:19 by Debbie Sturm

Today in the morning Ruth, Simone and I went to the hospital for the echoes of our new children, Ayleen, Dima and Armanj. Ayleen started crying even before we arrived in the hospital. As soon as we entered the hospital, the nurses started to do examinations and blood tests.

Ayleen was crying and moving around. Especially the blood test was a challenge and it took several people to quiet her down. But the nurses and doctors were really patient and tried many things to distract Ayleen. As her mother saw her little daughter crying, she started to sob as well. It was hard to see the mother and her little daughter so upset.

But after the first examinations were done both stayed calm and Ayleen listened to children songs. Before the echo started, she received sedation and fell asleep.

While Ayleen was sleeping and we were waiting for the echo, her mother and I could chat a little bit. With a mix of English, Kurdish, Arabic and by using hands and feet, a small conservation was possible. Finally Ayleen had her echo. The doctors hope to do a full repair. After a long day in the hospital we went home. Please keep little Ayleen and her mother in your prayers.


A New Addition

Posted on Wed, 04/19/2017 - 22:44 by Carol Clifford

Ayleen is a new little girl to our Shevet family. She and her mum are from Kurdistan. 

They arrived to the airport safely this morning after many hours of traveling. They flew in to Israel with two other Kurdish families - Dima and Armanj - and our Shevet volunteers picked them up. 

Upon arrival to our Shevet house, they directly connected to our current mothers, and Ayleen already made friends with another baby girl, Halat.

We welcome them with love and open arms!