July 26, 2010

Ups and Downs

Well, today was a day of ups and downs. We'll start with the ups - those are pretty exciting!
  1. His repeat head ultrasound was today, and it showed that the bleeding has lessened and is beginning to resolve itself! That was such a relief to hear.
  2. He is still rocking the feedings, so they have decided to supplement the breast milk with fortifier to add some calories (normal breast milk has 20 cal per oz, they can supplement to make it 22, 24, up to 30 cal/oz to help preemies put on weight.) He's now getting 22 cal/oz and hopefully he will tolerate it OK.

And for the down...

He had some pretty severe desats today. Severe, like his oxygen levels dropped from his normal 80 - 95% down to the teens and 20's. Pretty scary. In the morning, he had a couple episodes, which we weren't there for. They couldn't figure out why they were happening - apparently the nurses and Dr. K looked at all sorts of things - his tube placement, his blood gasses (levels of CO2 and other things in his blood), his lung x-rays, etc. Everything seemed normal. Dr. K didn't want to increase his settings on the vent too much, so he decided to put him on a nebulizer - albuterol - which would help with inflammation of the lungs. That is a common problem for babies on a ventilator for an extended time, and the treatment seemed to help. When John and I were there in the afternoon, he was doing much better. We, of course, take each setback pretty hard, and it is so disheartening (and scary) to see our little man struggle.

When we came back in the evening, Andrew gave us a show of our own - having another major desat when we first arrived, when the nurse flipped him from his belly to his back for his hands on/diaper change. Luckily, our nurse and one of the respiratory therapists were right there, and got him back up to normal levels quickly. Episodes like this remind us that we are really in a top-notch NICU. They handled the issue calmly and effectively, while at the same time reassuring us. After scaring the crap out of us for the second time that day, he was a complete angel the rest of our visit - behaving perfectly the entire time and looking absolutely adorable.

Here's Daddy giving Andrew some love this afternoon. Andrew was zonked out!

And, a funny picture from last night. J & I joke this is the way he is going to look as a teenager, as he sprawls out on the couch after a tough day:

I'm gathering a collection of pictures of his various "nests" that the nurses make to prop him up and keep him contained. They each have their own twist on it - from raft-like, to the hotel bed, to the straight-jacket. Something to look forward to in a future post!


Genna said...

he looks great! thinking of you.

Beth said...

Great news about the ultrasound. Hope you are recovered from the scares. Love the pic of him sprawled in his nest. Enjoy your visit with John and Corrie.

Karyn said...

Great news about the ultrasound and glad to hear that he is gaining weight. Slow and steady! Love the photo of Andrew flopping out of his nest, that is definitely a keeper! You'll have to remember to pull this one out and take a similar one when he is a teenager.

Kate C said...


This blog is terrific! It is so wonderful to hear about Andy on a daily basis and see pics of him! Thank you so much for doing this. We are praying for all 3 of you every day back in Ohio. Go Andy Go!!!

I know from my own experience how exhausting/draining/repetitive hospital life and pumping can be. I applaud you for keeping that up- your milk is his Super Food :)

I hope you and J are getting some rest when it's possible!

Sending you love,
Kate (Aunt CeeCee's friend from OH)