I am posting the latest journal entry for Bennett Speck below. Please pray for him tonight. Also, a close family friend, Robert Coss, had bypass surgery today after suffering a heart attack. He had 12 arteries that were blocked 95%. The surgery was successful, but he has a long road of recovery ahead of him.
September 6th - Day Eighteen, 6:30pmposted on 09/06/2007
Family and friends, I know we've said this before, but now is the most crucial "hour" for our precious boy. The next several hours and throughout the night will determine many things.
We just met with the wonderful team of doctors again. His lungs have responded better than they thought they would to being temporarily taken off ECMO. The lungs haven't responded anywhere near perfect of course, for they are still too weak. But the lungs did respond, so the decision has just been made to remove Bennett permanently from ECMO. There were a few other reasons why they wanted to take him off ECMO, including the fact that the machine had a major clot in it, but the main ones are because his lungs are functioning a little better now and to reduce his bleeding. Once he is off ECMO, he cannot return. This will significantly reduce and/or eliminate his bleeding, but it will also significantly reduce the assistance he was receiving. It's now entirely up to his lungs and heart.
So, can you see where we need prayers right now? Two main organs: his lungs and his heart. They now have to carry the burden of sustaining him, so please pray for the strength of his lungs and his heart. His heart is also of major concern because it now has to start acting like, well, a heart. But his heart has been hibernating over two weeks, so there is significant concern about how his heart will respond to the "shock" of having to work again. They will be giving his heart several drugs and steroids soon to try to kick it in gear.
The surgery option right now is still just an option. If his lungs continue to expand and strengthen, then surgery may not be needed. This would be ideal. But even if surgery is performed, the risks are much lower now because the heparin and excessive bleeding should no longer be issues. As you can imagine, so much is happening right now, and it's happening very quickly. Essentially what it boils down to is the healthy functioning of the lungs and the heart.
Before the doctors re-entered the NICU to head over to Bennett, we told them that we and several hundred people around the country are praying for them and for Bennett. They thanked us for that, and reminded us that faith is essential during times like this because their expertise can only go so far. Your prayers are sustaining us, the incredible medical staff here, and our precious son, and we ask that you once again join us in prayers for the doctors and for Bennett's lungs and heart. His has fought like a warrior, but his strength will be tested now more than ever.
We will most likely be here for the majority of the night, and as more updates become available we will let you know. As always, thank you for all your love and support.
Travis, Kelly, and Bennett