Thursday, August 30, 2012

Hospital Day

Helen DeVos Children's Hospital. (photo courtesy of
Today marked our third visit this month to Helen DeVos Children's Hospital.

Abigail had a...let me copy it down because I certainly don't remember the full name... esophagogastroduodenoscopy.  Got it?  Well, spell check doesn't recognize it either! :)

In other words, she "swallowed" a scope to look into her esophagus, duodenum and stomach.  I have pictures from the scope but won't post them here.  Instead, I'll show you pictures of Abigail waiting for the procedure.

Watching a movie and playing on an iPad

This is just the IV room.  We didn't take pictures in the endoscopy room.
This hospital is amazing!  George and I couldn't help comparing it to the hospital's we've visited in Ukraine. (See my post on Ukrainian hospitals for comparison.)  At Helen DeVos there are great waiting rooms and we were promptly seen by a doctor, even AHEAD of our appointment time.  The nurses were fantastic, helping Abigail to calm her fears and giving her a warm blanket to wrap up in.  They explained absolutely everything they were doing and allowed her to ask questions.  On a previous visit, Abigail had made friends with a woman in the family resource center.  Abigail stopped in to say hello today and this woman called down to a friend (whose job it is to make kids more comfortable) in sedation who brought Abigail an iPad to play with.  Abigail was distracted from the IV insertion by the hair parlor app!  Thank you, our nameless benefactor (although I'm sure she said her name since everyone there introduces themselves)!

Abigail was sedated with this great drug that makes her fall asleep for about a half an hour but leaves no side-effects.  Within an hour of the procedure she was awake, drinking Sprite, eating a rice crispy treat, and being wheeled back to the car in a wheelchair (she was still a bit unstable on her feet). 

Now the background.  Abigail had this endoscopy because since birth she has had problems with her stomach and we've been treating her for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) without ever having it examined by a doctor.  Now came the time to do that.  Thus the three visits to the hospital (evaluation with doctor, upper-GI exam, and today's endoscopy).  So far everything looks fine - meaning there's no anatomical problem and nothing abnormal in the scope's pictures.  Biopsy results come back in a week.

We are so thankful for excellent medical care, great insurance coverage, and caring nurses and doctors who do their jobs well and love children at the same time!  What a blessing!!!


  1. Wow! I'm glad she has had the thorough examination. I am praying that the biopsy results show that all her tissue is normal. My heart is with all of you. Carolyn

  2. It really is a different world! Greetings to all the family! Martin

  3. What an adventure for a kid to go through! Liz and I will pray that all is well.