Wall of Hope: Stories of Courage & Inspiration
When Skye Wheeler was born, he was diagnosed with three separate heart conditions – tricuspid atresia, atrial septal defect (ASD) and ventricular septal defect (VSD).
Tricuspid atresia is a congenital heart defect in which the tricuspid valve isn't formed, in turn blocking or severely restricting blood flow from the upper right chamber of the heart to the lower right chamber.
ASD and VSD mean there are holes in the heart wall, in Skye’s case in both the upper chambers – the atria – and lower chambers – the ventricles.
We were committed to caring and loving our baby no matter the circumstances."
“When we found out, we were sad, scared and worried, but at the same time, we were committed to caring and loving our baby no matter the circumstances,” says Skye’s dad, Derek.
Treating Skye’s conditions required three separate surgeries at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children, each of which was followed by inpatient stays in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit.
Skye also underwent open-heart surgery at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego to repair his tricuspid atresia.
Now 9 years old, Skye continues to receive follow-up care at Kapiolani with Pediatric Cardiologist Dr. James Sim to evaluate his progress.
They did their best to take care of our son and his needs, and to make him as comfortable as possible."
“Skye is doing great. He is a joy to have around and we cherish the time we have with him. He loves to be active and get outdoors. We keep busy and try to live life to its fullest,” Derek says.
He adds that the unwavering support of the doctors, nurses and staff at Kapiolani helped Skye and the entire Wheeler ohana receive the resources and outreach they needed.
“All the staff were very caring and understanding. They did their best to educate us, communicate to us and make us comfortable. They did their best to take care of our son and his needs, and to make him as comfortable as possible,” Derek says.
He is a joy to have around and we cherish the time we have with him."
“To anyone facing a similar situation, have faith in Kapiolani Medical Center. They will do their best to take care of your child,” he adds. “There are support groups and organizations that can help. Seek them out and get the services you need to take care of your child and your family.”
Published on: October 21, 2019