Sunday, September 23, 2007

July 31st, 2007


Update on the twin’s progress…

Kinnick and Carver are both off the ventilators!! No more conventional ventilator or CPAP. This is Carver’s second try off CPAP. The first time (7/18/07) he made it about 3 days. He had to wait another week before trying again. He has now been off CPAP for almost a week. Kinnick was taken off her ventilator and put on nasal canula Saturday. It’s her 4th day and she’s doing great. It took a while, but we are finally able to hear Carver cry! What a relief. We were so worried that he might suffer paralyzed vocal cords due to the length of time on the Ventilator. It will be a while before we are able to hear Kinnick. However, we have heard a few squeaks, so we’re pretty certain that she will not have any damage.

Kinnick and Carver are both getting extra oxygen via nasal canula. Carver is getting 200 – 250cc of extra oxygen. Kinnick skipped CPAP and is getting about 500cc of extra oxygen – pretty good for skipping CPAP. The doctors felt like the CPAP would add add’l gas to her already large tummy. So, they went to a little higher level of oxygen, instead. I’m being told that it is possible to go home on 250cc of extra oxygen. However, they would like to be at a little lower level to allow room if needed.

Carver and Kinnick are both on maintenance drugs to prevent seizures. They will continue to be on the maintenance drugs for quite some time.

Brain Hemorrhages:
Carver will receive an MRI this week. They will be looking at any damage that may be left behind due to the Grade 4 brain Hemorrhage that he received in his first couple weeks of life. Please pray that we receive good results.

We haven’t seen any change (good or bad) in the last couple of weeks. We are in somewhat of a holding pattern. It is not possible to remain in a holding pattern forever. Their eyes will either get better or worse. However, we are told this is viewed as positive. Typically if the retina is going to detach, you do not get a break. The deterioration continues without a holding pattern. So, we are hopeful that their eyes will start getting better. We are also told that once the babies get past 41-44 weeks, the retinas are less likely to detach (they are currently 41 weeks). However, we are still considered to be at high risk for having the retinas detach. The doctor will continue to monitor their eyes on a weekly basis.

Both Kinnick and Carver have been diagnosed with Rickets. This is a brittle bone disease. Their bones can break very easy. This should get better once they have been on full feeds for a while and are getting good nutrition.

Kinnick is now on full feeds. We had a scare last Friday – her tummy size increased pretty significantly. However, the CAT scan didn’t reveal a problem, so they continued her feeds. It appears that the majority of her feeding problems right now are related to slow motility in her intestines/colon. They are trying to convert Kinnick to the same over-the-counter formula as Carver. This is a special formula made for preemies that provides add’l calories. This should help their bone health improve. Carver is still on full feeds and doing great. On Saturday, they starting trying to bottle feed Carver. He has been able to drink about ½ his feed in the allowed time (30 min). He will be able to go home once he is able to finish all of his feeds within 30 min. They only allow him 1 try a day, unless he does really well. They will not try to bottle feed Kinnick until she is completely converted to the new formula and showing no signs of tummy problems.

Carver weights 7 lbs 14 oz. Kinnick weights 9 lbs 10 oz. She still has quite a bit of fluid as you can see in her picture, but she is starting to lose some of the fluid.

Both babies have started physical therapy to help with motor skills and to stretch muscles that haven’t been stretched laying flat in a bed instead of curled in a fetal position for the past 4 ½ months. They appear to enjoy the therapy. It seems to be very relaxing. In fact, some of the therapy looks a lot like a full body massage – who wouldn’t enjoy that?

I’m attaching pictures of both babies – Carver’s first bottle and Kinnick’s first day off the ventilator. It is amazing how far they have come. God must have big plans for our little angles. Only 6% of 23 week twins make it home. The odds of at least one baby coming home who was born at 23 weeks is about 17%. Our babies will both be coming home soon! Praise God!

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