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Thursday, May 6, 2010

33 Weeks 6 Days

Weight: 1165 grams (2 pounds, 9.5 ounces) Her feedings are currently fortified to 28 cal/ounce and she is taking 24 mL every 3 hours. Her doctor says that even for a 24 weeker, she's still pretty small, so hopefully she'll get her act together here in a few days and really start packin' on the, umm, ounces...

Eyes: She was examined again last week for ROP (Retinopathy of Prematurity), and we haven't seen a significant change yet. She should get an eye exam again either today or tomorrow. ROP is the reason why Stevie Wonder is blind. Just an FYI. (Don't worry though, they have done a lot of research since then and have significantly changed the outcomes for preemies with ROP).

Lungs: CA is "crackly" at times and is still getting albuterol as needed. She's requiring anywhere from 50-70% O2, as she has been for the past few weeks. The doctors think that they need to give her a little bit of a push to get her to breathe more effectively, but we should have a plan in place in the next week or so. Currently, the oxygen saturation in her blood only needs to be from 84-92%. At 34 weeks (tomorrow) she will be required to maintain O2's of 92-95%. For perspective, a healthy adult should have O2's of 98-100%. At 90%, an adult (even a child) would be admitted to the hospital and would not be allowed to go home. Previous NICU thinking was that a neonate should have 100% O2 as well. However, they have since determined that too much oxygen is caustic (the reason why we need anti-oxidants) and can cause damage to preemie's eyes and other organs.

Heart: Still fast, but working. That's how we like it. Charlotte Amalie is getting some blood work done tomorrow, and they'll see if she might need another blood transfusion. We were hoping that her last transfusion (about 3 weeks ago) would be the last one she needed, since every time blood is transfused it shuts down the recipient's ability to make blood on their own. The ability to make blood comes back, but we'd much rather see her make her own blood than consistently need transfusions. However, CA loves her some blood, so if she needs it, she'll get it. Amazing what you can do with a few red blood cells...

Digestive: Since this would not be a blog about a baby if I didn't talk about her dirty diapers, here it goes. The nurses are all very impressed with her stooling ability. One nurse in particular is convinced she has the largest "stools per capita" of any baby in the NICU. Yes, I know, per capita doesn't make sense there, but you get the idea.

Medicine: This changes every 3 minutes, I swear. However, I think the latest update is this: Sodium, Phosphate, one dose of Lasix (today), 2 other types of diuretics daily, albuterol as needed, and vitamins (those stinky ones that babies get-- poly-vi-sol). They have discontinued her caffeine. I think that covers it.

My brain is shutting down, so that's all you're gettin'. I think I'm going to get me a bed in the NICU-- constant care, food every three hours, heated beds and blankets, massage therapy...

Now that I think about it, it doesn't sound so bad!


  1. I'm glad Charlotte Amalie is progressing forward, even if just with baby steps. Good news on the ROP front! I'll check in from time to time to watch her progress and read more good news.

  2. I just found your blog via the NY Times article about Micro Preemies. It really hit home. I've been on the NICU roller coaster myself. I know what it is like to CRAVE information about your preemie. Our son was born 30 wks gestation at 1 lb 3 oz. He is one of those miracle babies that today has no residual side effects- he is 3 1/2 now. We've been through blood transfusions, sepsis and infection, surgeries, ROP, Hypospadias, severe reflux, you name it. These babies are fighters. I'd love to chat with you about the NICU / micropreemie experience. Email me any time at amers77 at aol dot com. Amy