Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Baby steps

Tom and I walked in to the ICN this morning, and saw Cute Nurse Angela and Respiratory Therapist Tim huddled over the isolette and our hearts leapt into our throats. Oh, god. What now? We drew closer to find... they were making prints of Jane's hands. They were CRAFTING with our kid.

(Angela cut out the reject prints for me -- she has plans for the best one. [Sheesh, these nurses!] Grandmas, never fear. They will appear in some form in your mailboxes by or before Christmas.)

After too many days of scaring the bejesus out of us (and pretty much everyone else), Jane is finally doing better. Her chest x-ray this morning showed continuing improvement in her lungs, and her oxygen levels were in the 60s for most of the day. The doctors seem to think it's a result of the steroids they started over the weekend. She's slowly being weaned off the nitric oxide they started on Friday. And in addition to the 16 ccs of milk she gets, they've added a couple of supplements to boost the calories in her feeds and fatten her up like Wilbur the pig. And they finally, FINALLY, decided to give her a day where they did not mess with her vent settings. THANK YOU.

We did have our sit down with the attending, and I'm glad as hell that we weren't talking with him earlier. He very painstakingly went over where things stand with Jane's two issues: her bleed (remember that? yeah, we sort of forgot about that, too), and her lungs. We did get a more nuanced view of what had happened with her bleed -- his final word on it is that she had a Grade 3 IVH and has post-hemmorhagic hydrocephalus. Which we pretty much already knew. We were both sitting there dying to tell him to just skip to the lungs through the whole brain discussion. Who ever thought we could be so cavalier about her brain?

As far as her lungs go, as I said last week, she definitely has BPD (the formal diagnosis will come in four weeks, when she's at 36 weeks) and what they're focused on is finding a point where the balance between healing and damage tips toward healing. There is a question of how she'll respond when the steroid treatment stops, but for now the strongest point in her favor is how well she's doing with her feeds. Nutrition seems to be the single biggest factor when it comes to recovering from BPD, and as I've said repeatedly, our girl knows how to eat. The best thing about the conversation? Planning another meeting three weeks from now. No one was planning anything three weeks out two days ago.

We're not at rainbows and unicorns yet, but things are looking better in the ICN. I wouldn't even put us at sunshine and ponies. More like a sunlamp and gerbils. But hey, I'll take it.


mommatosena said...

Sunlamps and gerbils eh...we'll take it! Continuing prayers and healing thoughts coming your way! Love the crafting they did with Jane...and when will baby aerobics start??

tia said...

Well, we discovered that poking Jane and tickling her feet and moving her head a little would get her saturation level up -- I guess that counts in a technical sense, right? Time to start on the track suit...