Last year, we had the opportunity meet Caitlin and Josh and their sweet daughter, Macey. She was in the middle of her 2 ½ year treatment for high risk Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Since that time, Macey has continued treatment mostly at home and monthly in hospital for lumbar punctures and a chemo infusion. It wasn’t unusual along the way for Macey to get a fever once in a while and require antibiotics to get over a small hump.
Last November, Macey had another fever. As was routine, Caitlin brought her into the hospital and they did some assessments. She was started on IV antibiotics and was making daily trips to the hospital for the necessary doses. However, Macey’s breathing became laboured and scans revealed that pneumonia may be settling in her lungs. She was admitted to the ICU for additional respiratory support.
Macey deteriorated at a shocking rate. All interventions weren’t working and within hours, Caitlin and Josh were being told that they may need to consider putting Macey on ECLS – a life support system to take over for her failing lungs and heart. It was horrifying to think that it could have got to this place so quickly. Shortly after that conversation, Macey was having cannulas inserted into her neck to the doorway of her heart to take over the life giving pumping and oxygenation process. Once stabilized, she was transported to cardiac care specialists in Edmonton at the Stollery.
There were some terrifying moments in Edmonton when they thought they may have lost Macey when there was limited brain activity, but true to her trademark fighting spirit, Macey fought her way back, and by December 13, after two exhausting weeks, Josh and Caitlin were THRILLED to have their daughter back in the PICU at the Alberta Children’s Hospital.
Macey continued to heal and recover and went home January 9. Some specialists around the hospital have used the word “miracle”…not a word they say lightly. She still has some treatment to get through, but Miss Macey has made it clear that she’s in this fight to win.
To hear more stories like this or to donate to the 2017 Caring for Kids Radiothon in support of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation visit www.KidsRadiothon.com