A St. Louis cardiologist said Monday 5-month-old Annabelle Loschko of Nisswa faces a long journey in a battle to regain her health, nearly a week after she received a new heart at the St. Louis Children's Hospital.
Dr. Charles Canter, director of the heart transplant program at the hospital, said Annabelle continued to be in critical condition Monday after being taken off a heart/lung bypass machine. She is on a ventilator.
"When you're as sick as she is, you just don't recover quickly," he said in a phone interview.
Although there have been complications since she was taken off the heart/lung machine, it's been nothing unexpected, Canter said. Annabelle is experiencing swelling that must go down before her sternum can be closed. She's experiencing problems with urination and her lungs, the doctor added. She's also on various heart medicines, he said.
"She'll be down here for weeks," Canter said.
He said Annabelle's parents, Mark and Ellie Loschko, are demonstrating great strength throughout this ordeal as they wait in St. Louis.
A Web site that contains updates on her condition may be found at http://www.caringbridge.com/mn/annabelle2209/.
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