Level Up!

Posted on 3rd December 2011 in NICU, Week 4

Yesterday the twins moved to the Level 1 NICU!  If you recall from previous posts (or other references), Level 3 is the “scary NICU” and Level 1 is pretty much just a nursery.  Level 1 (also called the Special Care Nursery) is where the stable kids go to get bigger.  It’s another great step forward for the twins!

Sophia’s still recovering from her PDA heart problem and round of medicine to fix it.  She’s getting going on feeding again, but she’s only eating 4mL of milk at each meal.  Her PICC line is still feeding her the rest of the nutrients she needs direct to her bloodstream.

Cameron is now completely off supplemental heat, but he’s kept pretty well bundled up.  He’s doing well with his feedings and is now up to 38mL a meal (30mL is an ounce).

Here’s a view of their new room.  Their room is about the same size as typical home’s bedroom.  It’s much more private than the rest of the NICU and is set up for families to spend time with their kids.  Sophia’s on the left & Cameron’s on the right…

Despite his extremely strong desire to always be spread eagle, Cameron was fairly happy being swaddled.  Of course, he threw up all over this cute swaddle blanket and his clothes right after I got done holding him…

Cameron was somehow still surprised that I stuck a camera in his face…

The indomethacin that Sophia was on is designed to constrict blood vessels.  That’s how it works to close the PDA problem she had.  It doesn’t just close one blood vessel though; it tightens them all down.  A minor complication of that medicine is that it slows down the blood flow to the kidneys.  So…Sophia’s a little slow at getting rid of the fluids in her body.  While she was on the indomethacin, she gained (or retained, really) about 10 oz of water weight.  Ten ounces (same as 300g or a little over 1/2 lb) of extra “bloat” on a preemie looks about the same as about 30 lbs on a 170lb man.  That’d be like me sticking nearly 4 gallons of water somewhere on my body.  That would not be pretty.

Back to Sophia…that 10 oz of extra water weight makes her look, ummm, a little puffy…

Sophia really looks uncomfortable, but she seems to be in pretty good spirits.  Hopefully that whole “you don’t need heart surgery” is keeping her happy.  As the medicine gets out of her system over the next couple days, the extra water weight should go away too.  I’m guessing that in 4 days or so, she’ll be back to her normal self weighing in around 4 lbs.

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