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4:51 p.m. UPDATE
Jeff Miller just called from the Pittsburgh Hospital and said doctors came out and said, "It was all a success... little Peter is now finished... and will be moved to the ICU if not there already... Catherine is doing extremely well and she is in the other hospital ICU... doctors said it went very well."
Needless to say, we are all thrilled!
Jeff also said the doctors said that Catherine and Peter will spend the next 4-5 days in the ICU. Ultrasounds will be performed in next 3-5 days. After 7th day, worry about rejections. Second month worry about infections. The next 2-3 days are crucial, but everything went fine.
4:25 p.m. ET UPDATE:
Peter's surgery is complete. They are closing him up now. Doctors should be out soon to address the family.
2:00 p.m. ET UPDATE:
Catherine is done with her surgery — she is now in post-op and in about an hour, she'll be transferred to the ICU. Nurses say Peter is doing great. Doctors hope to be done with everything by 4 p.m. ET
1:21 p.m. ET UPDATE
Catherine's liver has been transferred. They are finishing Catherine's operation and are working on Peter with his new liver.
12:30 p.m. ET UPDATE:
In about 15-20 minutes, Catherine's liver will be transferred from her hospital to Peter's. Both Peter and Catherine are doing well — smooth sailing so far.
Noon ET UPDATE:
Catherine and Peter are doing great. Catherine's liver is fine. They are in the middle of surgery now.
10:00 a.m. ET UPDATE:
We just got the first update from the doctor: both Catherine Herridge and Peter are doing great. No problems at all. The update was brief b/c the surgeries just got started.
Next update will be in two hours.
Our show e-mail account got flooded with e-mails about Catherine and her son Peter. Last night — about 12 hours before surgery — I called Catherine and told her about all the e-mails. She was very appreciative of all the support from the FOX viewers. As you read this, both are in surgery with their respective surgical teams. We are very optimistic — yes, nervous — but there is great success with this type of transplant surgery.
In anticipation of Catherine and Peter's surgery, I studied liver transplants. I received many e-mails from viewers asking about the surgery and the transplant. Since I barely got through high school chemistry, I am not the one to answer your questions… but if you want to read more about the program where Peter and Catherine are getting their surgery, here is the Web site: http://livertransplantprogram.upmc.com/
I was immensely impressed with the doctors and staff at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. At one point, when it appeared no one was looking, I saw Peter's doctor reach into Peter's hospital crib and gently stroke Peter's tiny head. You could tell that the doctor, in addition to being very skilled, loves Peter as I am sure he loves all his little patients.
Catherine's doctor was likewise impressive. He explained to her in blunt, but warm words, what she is facing when the surgery begins. He was very straightforward — including making it plain to her that she is his priority. Catherine's priority is Peter, but this doctor's priority is Catherine and he said he will let Peter's doctors make Peter their priority. Catherine's surgeon is the kind of doctor who imparts to the patient both competence and warmth
Incidentally, in yesterday's blog I had Peter's age wrong. He was born Dec. 30, so is he's 5 months old. Time flies… I had thought he was born 3 or 4 months ago!
Now for some of your e-mails:
E-mail No. 1
While I don't know Taylor, we have mutual friends. I'm not surprised that he was charming to you. We Southern men are raised to idolize, practically worship our women, regardless of the existing stereotypes of us as "rednecks." I would have been surprised if he had not been gracious! BTW, we all love Taylor down here in Birmingham. He has a great reputation locally. God Bless!
Rev. Jim Gibson
"The Weather is here. Wish you were beautiful!" — Jimmy Buffett
E-mail No. 2
I wanted to write and express my support to your colleague and her son.(Also to you and your staff!) As a 5 1/2 year liver transplant recipient, I wanted to let you know you are all in my prayers. As a mother and a grandmother, I think this would be so much harder to go through with a child. I was fortunate in that my sister also offered to be my donor. As it turned out it was not necessary, but it was comforting to just know she was willing. Thank you for sharing this with your viewers/readers. Organ donation is, unfortunately, still too often a major medical problem that is ignored. It is getting better but still needs more attention than it receives.
I read your blog every day and am a big fan of 'OTR'!
Oklahoma City, OK
E-mail No. 3
Love and prayers for Catherine and her family. Seems odd to say that since I really don't know her but I can certainly empathize. Seventeen years ago one of our granddaughters was born with about everything possible wrong with her. She set a record at that time for an infant on the EKMO (Heart/ Lung machine) at 32 days. This year she graduated from high school and intends to go into teaching. At the time she drained all of our emotion and most of our bank accounts (both our son's and ours) but it was worth every penny and today we are so proud of her.
Again, tell Catherine that she's not alone... many of us understand and send our love, prayers and understanding.
E-mail No. 4
My hopes and prayers go out to Catherine and her family at this very trying time. When I was in nursing school over 30 years ago, I was able to observe a kidney transplant, then a very new procedure. Since then, while serving in the Air Force and at various hospitals across the country, I have met surgeons who have dedicated themselves to the furthering of the transplant programs. I have always found them to be dedicated, extremely smart, and also very caring individuals. To Catherine: use this time of challenges to strengthen your marriage and support your first-born. I know from watching you that you are strong and determined. Remember that not all are created that way and some need the support of those of us who can give it. Finally, take a long vacation after this is all over—- that is when you will cry.
Carolyn Watts, RN
E-mail No. 5
Our grandparents were an item as she and I both have Canadian roots. We worked together years ago in ABC’s London bureau too. Please give her my best wishes and prayers that she and the baby come through with flying colors.
E-mail No. 6
Thank you for this info on Catherine and family. This story has tugged at my heart. I lost my firstborn son at 11 days old in 1973. I am in awe and have a tremendous amount of admiration for her courage. I am sure she is aware of the risks, but she is a "mother", which outweighs any risks. Thankfully God in his infinite wisdom has created doctors to advance medicine. This procedure was unheard of in 1973. Right after reading your news, I bowed my head in prayer for Catherine, her husband, Peter, the doctors, nurses, and all the others who will be assisting in this long procedure. Being an avid Fox watcher these reporters seem like friends, even though you know you will never meet them face to face, but care about them. They become more than just a face on the TV. I knew they had a little boy, but had not heard of any complications. Thank you so very much for keeping us informed. I am anxious, but my faith keeps me uplifted, and please let Catherine and her family know that we care. I know I am not the only one.
E-mail No. 7
I had wondered why we had not seen Catherine Herridge on TV that often lately — please let her know that what she is doing is so very admirable and "mother-like" — she, the baby and her entire family will be in our prayers and I hope that in some small way that helps.
E-mail No. 8
I wish Catherine and her child the very best in their time of need. Every parent would give whatever it took to help their child live. Having been down this road with Leukemia and my son. I wasn't able to do it for my son, and I lost him.
Having grown up in Pittsburgh, I know they are at the best hospital for this procedure. The journey is rough, hopefully it will end well for both of them.
E-mail No. 9
For your friend, Catherine: My brother donated part of his liver to my older brother several years ago. They both recovered and are now doing just fine. Tell her to keep the faith and our thoughts are with her.
E-mail No. 10
Watching that adorable baby smile at his mother has my eyes are still watering. I'll be thinking of them both all day tomorrow. Please wish them the best for me.
E-mail No. 11
Please extend our support and prayers to Catherine and Peter. I received a liver on our anniversary (11/22/04) and am doing well. We waited 5 years and have some understanding of their wait and hope. My transplant was at the UNMC in Omaha and I know the Children's Hospital in Pittsburg is also top notch. During our time on the waiting list a family member stepped forward and offered to be a live donor. Long story short it didn't pan out, however a cadaver liver eventually became available. Having been down a similar path I believe Catherine and Peter are in excellent hands and theirs will a success story for you to share! You are a great friend supporting her and the family, please know how important this is. We send our support and will be there in sprit for them. Thank you for passing this on with a squeeze.
Tom & Marvel Simmons
E-mail No. 12
Just read your blog about Catherine's infant son, and the liver transplant. Please convey my heartfelt love and prayers for her and her baby. I would do the same thing if I were in her shoes. In fact, most mothers would gladly give their own lives to save their children. My prayers will be with her and the baby and my hopes that they will be all right. I've watched Catherine many times on various news spots and my admiration for her has gone up a few notches. God be with them.
D. Eaton, TX
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