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the eric update - day 30: an alarming night. a chest x-ray. and maybe a hernia.

even though they put eric back on the cpap, he continued to have an "alarming" night last night, throwing an unusally high 16 "a's and "b's" through the night. we feared that he might need to go back on the vent, but nurse jan said it can sometimes take 24 hours for a baby to stabilize their respiration after they get pooped, barring any other complications. the strange lung sounds have stopped, which i guess is a good thing as long as they stay gone. they took a chest x-ray this morning to rule out any lung abnormalities and everything checked out just fine, which is a big relief. his blood work doesn't show any indications of an infection, so we're hopeful that all his alarming is just a sign that he's telling us that he's tired and would like a little help breathing and not something more nefarious.

they are also monitoring eric closely to determine if he what is known as an inguinal hernia. it's your basic "bulge in the groin" hernia that a man might get if he's lifted something too heavy and pushed a loop of intestine through a weakened muscle or an opening inside his body. in eric's case, there's a hole high in his groin created by the inguinal canal. it's open and holding his testicles which aren't even scheduled to descend until 32 weeks gestation ( which means we have about 3 more weeks to go in micropreemie time ). the hole left by the open inguinal canal can allow part of his intestine to push through the gap, which appears to be what is happening to eric. at the moment, they aren't sure if he even has a hernia ( although it's likely he does ), but if he does, they will hope that it remains "reducible" ( i.e. can be pushed easily back through the opening ); if it does not remain reducible, then he will need to be transported to the other nicu in town, which we wouldn't like since we've become such big fans the st. mary's nicu staff and their care. but for now it's a waiting game, while they try to make a definitive diagnosis.

from the too-much-information department. micropreems will often get hernias because they start pooping before their inguinal canal closes, which is not something that mother nature intended, as a baby is not normally pooping in utero before the canal would typically close. the effort associated with pooping can push the intestine through the gap. such are the trials and tribulations for a micropreem.

later in the night, eric decided to finally settle in and his alarms went back to a "normal" level, which means that just might have been a little tired from all the time on the nasal cannula.

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8/03/2004 10:30:00 PM 3 comments


Oh, yes... The hernia :(

We've known many little guys needing this surgery, including our own. Kyle was 40wks gestation when he had a rt side repair. His left testicle hasn't descended yet either, so we'll wait and pray that this happens in the next 6 months, or it will require yet another surgery :(

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:23 PM  

yeah, it's pretty common. they still haven't made an official diagnosis, but i'm betting that it's a hernia. hopefully it stays "reducible". i've heard the surgery is fairly minor and and can be done with "only" a spinal and not general anesthesia.

By Blogger e3, at 12:02 PM  

They didn't give us that option. They did however give him the spinal after the surgery to help with recovery discomfort. I would go for that for certain, if they give you that option!

Kyle had a difficult time recovering from the vent for that. He eventually had some heart trouble associated with labor in breathing... All for a hernia repair - go figure :( It's what extended our NICU stay by nearly 2 more months!

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:48 PM  

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