Sunday, October 26, 2008

Re-starting Feeds & Kangaroo Care

Today was Logan and Landon's 3 week birthday and both of them had a great day! Their blood gases have been good and they are slowly being weaned down on their ventilator settings. I'm hoping that Landon will be back on the conventional vent and Logan will be moved to the CPAP soon. Their blood gas analyses are a measure of the oxygen, carbon dioxide and acid in their blood and are extremely important in assessing their lung function and ensuring they are bringing in oxygen and discarding carbon dioxide efficiently.

Another bit of good news is that they were able to restart Logan's gavage feeds again today (using a feeding tube). Prior to the PDA ligation surgery, Logan was tolerating the feeds very well and was on Day 7 of the feed schedule (which meant 4 ml's of breastmilk every 3 hours). Unfortunately, they now have to start all over on Day 1 (1.2 ml's every 3 hours) but will probably increase the amount of breastmilk he receives at a quicker rate. Landon hasn't been able to tolerate his feeds at all, apparently his belly just isn't ready yet and all we can do is keep trying. Prior to the feeds they are nourished through a mixture of IV fluids (sugar water, lipids, vitamins etc.) and this is usually enough to sustain them but not enough to ensure proper growth and much needed weight gain. They both lost weight in their first week of life but have surprisingly gained some of it back and are now both within 2 ozs. of their birth weights. I pray for that day to come when they finally fill out and their tiny bones and ribs aren't so pronounced.

Today was also an especially nice day for me as I got to do kangaroo care with Logan for the 3rd time!! What this means is that Logan (clad only in his little diaper) is taken out of his isolette with all his wires and vent tubes and placed upright on my naked chest, in between my breasts. His head is turned to the side so his cheek is resting comfortably on my skin so he can hear my heartbeat and he is covered with a few blankets to help keep him warm. Today I got to hold and sit with him for 2 hours!! It is without a doubt the best feeling in the entire world and I cherish and look forward to each and every minute we get to spend together like this. I've done kangaroo care with Landon once as well but his vitals have not been as stable as Logan so I haven't been able to hold him again. I added a few pics above: the top two are Logan and I and the bottom two are the only time I've been able to hold Landon.

This is about as good as it gets as far as a day in the NICU and I've learned on days like this to just relax, take it all in and enjoy my time with my boys. You never know what the next day is going to bring.

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