the eric update – day 31: 2 pounds! a gregorian birthday. a vent?

day 31: two pounds!

2 pounds, 1.7 ounces! 956 grams! almost a kilo! on his first “real” gregorian monthly birthday, eric decided to surprise everyone and break the 2 pound mark! everyone was completely surprised, because after getting close two nights ago, he dropped back down to 1 pound 13 ounces last night, and a typical weight gain for him might be a half ounce. so he gained nearly 4 ounces in a single night, which is unprecendented. i guess he decided that we could use a present on his birthday. and yes, i’ve already decided that, instead of just celebrating ‘4 week’ milestones, we’ll also celebrate regular monthly “birthdays” since he probably deserves as much celebrating as he can get. hitting the two pound mark is A Big Deal, so we’re very, very happy.

day 31: transfusion. I.

it was nice to have such great news towards the end of the day, because most of the day was spent anxiously awaiting to see if they were going to put him back on the vent. yes. that’s right. the vent. on this rollercoaster, in the span of 48 hours, we can go from seeing if he’s strong enough to be on the nasal cannula for 24 hours, to being told by the neonatologist ( you know thing are getting serious when you find yourself having an unscheduled chat not with a nurse or nurse practitioner, but with he himself, the neonatologist. ) that he had so many alarms over the previous night that they are close to putting him back on the vent.

day 31:  transfusion. II.

but first, they were going to give him a few blood transfusions because his red blood count was dropping to levels where it was possible that his lack of “boxcars” was really the root cause of his respiration problems. low boxcars, means less oxygen, which means he has to work harder just to stay at the same level, which means he gets tired and starts alarming. or at least that’s the theory. they game him 8 cc’s of blood 4 hours apart ( 4:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. ). so it’s time for everyone’s favorite way to pass the time – The Waiting Game. they’ll run his bloodwork at 1 a.m., run the numbers and decide if he needs a third transfusion before tommorrow morning. which means we get to spend the night wondering if we’ll find him on the vent in the morning.

day 31: on his permanent record

all the red marks indicate when his heart rate dips and he stops breathing. if he gets too many marks on his record, then he goes back on the vent.

as a consolation prize for having to play the waiting game over the night, the nurses all made a point to express that they are fairly confident that his dropping red blood counts are what are causing the problems; they had made a clinical note just last night that he was looking particularly pallid and that he would likely need a transfusion soon. but he’s had 17 a’s and b’s through the day, so nobody can really say or sure if the transfusion will kick in before they decide to put him on the vent. or if the low red blood count really is the underlying issue.

day 31: torso

so be sure to tune in tomorrow for the next exciting episode of The Waiting Game.

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