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the eric update - day 67: closing in on four pounds. on quickly selecting a pediatrician.

thanks to his low hemoglobin levels and, well, the fact that he is a micropreemie who needs to spend all his energy growing, eric is spending much of his days acting a little listless and sleeping quite a bit. we received the results from his latest blood work and his hemoglobin level is now officially at the same point is was when they gave him his last series of transfusiona. when exactly he'll get some more blood has become a great conversation topic, and it's a sneaky way to get a sense for which nurses agree with the neonatologist's course of action and which don't. he's holding out like a champ, although he's "desatting" more and more, especially when he's active, which makes feedings an endless series of alarms.

eric is continuing to add weight, thanks in no small part to the fortifier. to put things in perspective, he's getting about 30 extra calories a day from his fortifier ( about 4 calories per ounce of milk are added ) and that small addition of calories is primarily responsible for his ounce-a-day weight gains. tonight he weighed in at 3 pounds 14.7 ounces or 1777 grams. if he keeps it up, i'll be much more confident that we'll be able to celebrate his hitting 4 pounds by his 10 week birthday on sunday.

while it might be boring for you, poor reader, we aren't quite bored with the fact that eric is doing such a great job taking his bottles. he's up to three bottle feeds a day, with the remainder being done via a tube that goes straight to his stomach.

when he's tired, he'll often feign like he's not really interested in eating, but we know it's all a big act and he inevitably drinks his entire bottle in 20 minutes or less. if all goes well, over the next week or so, we'll be responsible for giving him all his feeds via a bottle, which will be quite exciting, indeed.

after much nagging from the nicu staff, kris and i selected a pediatrician today! we are notorious for taking months to decide on something as simple as a new toaster, so picking a pediatrician could have been something that threw us into months of "analysis paralysis". that is, if we actually had months to make the decision. but we didn't, as the nicu nurses have been making it increasingly clear that they needed to start making arrangements with our pediatrician, like, yesterday. so we created a "short list" by asking all the staff who they would take their kids to and correlating the answers with the list of peds doctors in our insurance plan. we then scheduled "meet and greet" appointments and asked a few pointed questions, which led to a surprisingly quick decision.

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9/09/2004 11:22:00 PM 7 comments

7 Comments:

I like that list of pediatician questions. The biggest things will be how the office handles after-hours calls. With kids, it seems that every weird illness or high fever happens in the middle of the night or on a sunday. I think they plan that. Some pediatricians have a simple answering service that follows a scripted protocol. Some pediatricians offices will page a nurse on call to call you right back (and response time can vary.) It is always best to talk to a real live nurse as opposed to an answering service.

The other thing that might become an issue is wait time. Some pediatricians will brag that they have a very short waiting-room time and they "get you in" in under 20 minutes. What they don't tell you is that once you're in the examining room with your sick little one, that you'll have to wait a whole hour.

Anyway, the only way you'll know whether or not you like who youve chosen is to try them out for a while. Since you're not on an HMO, you can easily change pediatricians later, so don't feel that this was a super-heavy decision... later, if you don't like this ped., just switch to another one. Records can usually be transferred for like a $15 copying fee. Whoever you choose, don't expect to agree with them on every point 100%. The boys have a wonderful ped. but sometimes she likes to give advice on parenting or discipline. I have learned to just ignore stuff that is not medical unless it makes sense to me. But, it was good to find one who was breastfeeding friendly and had nursed her own children -- that did make us see eye-to-eye a bit more. I like this article http://www.askdrsears.com/html/2/T027400.asp
:)
C

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:04 AM  

Oops - that was the wrong Sears article. LOL. This is the right one
http://www.askdrsears.com/html/10/t110204.asp

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:10 AM  

hi! first and foremost, congrats on eric's progress. as always, it is awesome to see how good he is coming along. second, and this is very random, how do i access your archives?!? i'm trying to locate the song (time after time) that went along with eric's movie. i adore it and wish for nothing more than to download it, except i never wrote down who sang it because i just kept hitting refresh on the page to listen to it again! thus, i tried looking in your archives but i can't find them?!? and finally, last night in class we were talking about the norse and odin. and of course, i thought of no one else other than baby eric! by the way, did you know that odin also meant wednesday? or stood for that day or something or another like that!

By Blogger cristi, at 12:24 PM  

the peds office that we chose doesn't have as good late night or weekend hours as the other one one our short list, but they're a "lower volume" office so you can supposedly get in more quickly and frequently. or so they say. you're right, i think we're not really going to know until we try them out. the biggest thing is that they have a separate room that we can wisk eric into when we arrive so we don't have to sit out with all the other sick kids and risk him catching something.

wierdly, they don't even have a nurse triage phone system. if you call off hours an actual doctor will call you back, which is quite shocking in this day and age. probably most importantly, the office handles quite a few micropreems, so they are very comfortable with dealing with wee ones.

By Blogger e3, at 12:38 PM  

hi christi,

thanks for the comments on odin's progress!

the easiest answer is that you can find the movie with "time after time" here.

but in the future you can find the archives by clicking on the icon right next to the orange "xml" icon, which is near the top of the page. the icon is supposed to look like a series of pages stacked on top of each other, which at one time struck me as an appropriate symbol for an archive, but everyone asks me how to access the archives, so it's probably time to fine a new icon. after you click on the the 'archive' link, simply look for the month that you think a post might have been published and follow the appropriate link.

hope that helps. sorry for the confusion.

By Blogger e3, at 12:44 PM  

thank you much :)

By Blogger cristi, at 5:37 PM  

When Ricky came along at 33 weeks I had just barely made an appointment to visit with my childhood pediatrician to interview him about being Ricky's doctor. So when I found out that Ricky was going to be coming early I had to suddenly name a pediatrician (they asked, I answered!) and I gave that doc's name. He came to see me after Ricky's birth and expressed surprise that I was even pregnant! He was pleased we picked him and he turned out to be a great choice. I just wish we didn't have to decide so quickly!

By Blogger Becky Sprecher, at 2:31 PM  

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[ rhetoric ]

"it is hard to be brave," said piglet, sniffing slightly, "when you're only a Very Small Animal." rabbit, who had begun to write very busily, looked up and said: "it is because you are a very small animal that you will be Useful in the adventure before us."

the complete tales & poems of winnie the pooh

[ about ]

this site chronicles the continuing adventures of my son, odin, who was unexpectedly born on the fourth of july at 25 weeks gestation, weighing 1 pound 7 ounces.

he's quite a fighter and you can always send him a postcard to the most current address listed here if you're inspired by his adventures. see the postcard project/google maps mashup to see a map of the postcards.

if you're new, you can browse the archives to catch up. and don't forget to watch a few movies that i made while we were in the neonatal intensive care unit. or if you want the abridged version and you can find a copy, you can read about his adventures in the november 2005 issue of parents magazine.



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