I have about a million things to say but will keep it to a brief medical update so everyone is up to date. I will try to come back later with pictures and stories of all the cute things Ms. Natalie has been up to.
Natalie had a lot of difficulty with IVs over the weekend so they restarted her feeds a day early. She is now on nearly full feeds and tolerating it well. The docs added Reglan to help with stomach motility. I can say she is certainly pooping like it is her job and hope that continues to be the case. No one has a good reason for why her stomach continued to act up so all we can do is hope that the issue is resolved.
We have been able to hold her several times now although they limit it to once a day. It is awesome! Oh my goodness, she is a little snuggle bug.
As for other medical news, she had her echo yesterday but no official report yet. The good news is the cardiologists have not tracked down the neonatologist in a panic, so I am somewhat certain that things at least have not become critical.
Dr. Amin is waiting for the results of the echo to make any further decisions regarding medications. We had really built up Monday in our mind as a day that plans would be finalized but we remain in a state of waiting. There are a lot of decisions to be made over the next few weeks and it is intense when we try to imagine the big picture.
Natalie had been up in her Os over the weekend until she had her special nurse Kathy. When I called Sunday night I asked if she was still in the 50's and Kathy said "no!" I braced myself to hear 60's only to find that she was at an incredible 38%. I do not know what Kathy does differently but Natalie certainly responds to it. Since then she has been pretty happy in the low 40's.
She has been stable yesterday and today. Natalie continues to have better blood gases on this vent. Yesterday they switched her vent mode to Pressure Control/Pressure Support. This lets Natalie do more of the work on breaths she takes above the set rate (which is still a very high 60/min). This morning her CO2 was low enough for a wean so her total pressure went down by one (from 24 to 23, also a high setting). As my niece would say "woot!" This is the first real wean she has had and we are keeping everything crossed that she tolerates it well.
I reminded them today that she has yet to have any vaccines and the plan is to start giving her any that are not live vaccines. We are heading into cold/flu season and there are not enough words for the fear that puts in my heart. A simple cold could be fatal for Natalie, let alone actual influenza. She is not old enough for the flu vaccine but I feel better about her having protection from whatever vaccines she is eligible for.
This morning her nurse asked occupational therapy to make splints for her feet. Natalie is actually stable enough for people to even think about her feet. That is incredible.
Natters is holding her own and doing well. Three of her daytime primary nurses stopped in today and all wore a happy smile. I think that means more than any of the numbers.