Tucker was diagnosed with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. This is where the left side of his heart didn't fully develop. A series of three surgeries is needed to reconstruct the heart so that the right side will be able to run blood to his entire body. They're usually spread out within the first 2 years of life. Each child has individualized needs and every case is handled differently. Please keep us in prayers as this will be a long journey. I love, Luke 1:37 "For NOTHING is impossible with God."
Letter from me.
My name is Amber Johnson, I am a friend of Scott and Jamie Adkins. I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude that you are visiting our page today. Whether you are leaving a note of encouragement for the Adkins family or you’re giving today, we are equally as grateful. When I was leaving the hospital the other day I was overwhelmed with the heaviness of the situation. Please allow me to put it in perspective for you, Jamie and Scott found out during the early stages of their pregnancy that Tucker’s heart was not developed as it should've been. The left side of his heart simply didn’t develop. Imagine for a moment as a parent receiving news like this, that the most important organ in your child's body was not forming correctly. Tucker has what is known as HLHS or Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. Immediately after the diagnosis was given preparations were put in place to be able to give Tucker his best chances of a successful surgery once born. So many pieces of their life changed, from Jamie’s eating habits and everything she put in her body having to be considered, being told to reduce activity, weekly trips to the hospital to monitor his growth, as a baby with HLHS are normally underweight due to the condition.
On July 13th Jamie had developed HELLP Syndrome. Basically where her body was rejecting the placenta. The doctor came and told them that they had been moved to the top of the list for an emergency C-section. Tucker was born at 2:22 pm, weighing 3lbs 11ounces and 16 inches long. So not only was he battling HLHS, but now he was born at only 34 weeks.
At a week old, Tucker underwent a surgery to place bands on his pulmonary arteries. This was to be able control blood flow to his lungs and allow more to go to the rest of his body in hopes that it will help him to be able to put on as much weight as possible. After this surgery they were told his little heart was the size of a strawberry and his aorta was like a single strand angel hair pasta. It was much smaller than the doctor was used to seeing. Tucker is the smallest baby they've had on the CVICU floor at All Children’s Hospital. He has continued to put on weight and the doctors have been waiting for him to gain enough so that they can go ahead with the Norwood Sano Shunt Procedure. Here is a quick explanation of this procedure, Tucker will be put on the ECMO bypass machine to provide blood to his body and brain during the procedure. They will be going through the same incision as before. The surgeon will cut open the aorta and pulmonary artery and sew them together. This is the most crucial part of all of it. This aorta/aortic arch was the size of an angel hair pasta on July 21st, they are hoping it's bigger now! Then they will remove his PA bands to stop the restriction of blood flow. The hope is that after removing some of the scar tissue that has formed the flow will be good and he won't need stents to widen it. Next, they'll be placing a shunt that will allow blood to flow from the right ventricle of the heart to the lungs. This whole procedure will take anywhere from 6-8 hours. This is only the first of 3 surgeries he will have to undergo.
Now that I have given you an overview of Tucker’s first month of life please allow me to put in perspective Jamie and Scott's last month. They are staying at the Ronald McDonald House located most conveniently down stairs in the hospital. However, as nice as it may be, it’s not home. It’s full of many other families with similar situations and is basically a very small size hotel room. Scott gets up every day and heads to work, works a full day and heads back to the busy hospital to be with his family. Jamie has had to take FMLA from her teaching job at West Elementary. FMLA is unpaid leave. She plans to return in November, however that is 12 weeks with out pay. Being without half of their income is a strain on any family, even more so in a situation like this. As we all know when hard times come, the bills don’t stop arriving in the mail. In this case they are coming in faster and in greater degree because of the medical bills. This is all added on top of what is a very scary circumstance of little Tucker's life.
I’m asking you to look in your heart and to stop throughout your day to most importantly PRAY for Tuckers strawberry sized heart and for his family. Pray for his healing, his future surgeries, and his recovery. I asked Jamie the other day, ”How do you hold it together? I would be a mess.” She said, “I have to hold it together. I have to be able to tell others what’s going on, to be able to answer questions, and to be available. There’s no time to cry. People keep telling me how strong I am. I have to be, and I don’t feel it. I HAVE to be strong. There's no other choice.” My God, what an amazing soul he has put in Jamie and Scott. Pray for an outpouring of strength and peace. Also that in the middle of this storm they would all be anchored to the Lord of Heaven and Earth. The Lord that ordained this family before time began. He knows their every need more than we do, and loves them more than we ever could.
Lastly, Please, Please Give, find it in your heart to give to this family. No amount is to small, and means more than they could ever express.
You can also give to Tucker and his family by mail. Please make check payable to Jamie Adkins. In the memo box please write "Gift for Tucker". All the amounts given can be added to his online total.
Mail checks to.
6437 NE Douglas Ter.
Arcadia FL. 34266
DonationsSee top donations
- West Elementary
- Chili's Give Back Night #2
- Amber Johnson
- Tim & Karen Edsall and Jacey
- Chili's Give Back Night (Sept. 16)
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