Saturday, July 15, 2006

Holding our breath

It's E-day +1, and the suspense just continues. We knew that it would be a pretty tense time after the immediate extubation, but I guess neither of us realized how long the nervosity would continue. When you have a kid who's not used to breathing on his own, the responsibility and effort of making every breath can be an awful lot of energy to expend, and we continue to worry about him getting too tired to be able to adequately regulate his oxygen and CO2 levels: his blood gas test taken this morning was good for the pH (7.31) but getting a little high in the CO2 levels (70), which fueled the fears a little (although when we checked on him last night, he was requiring 80% oxygen to keep up his sats, so at least he didn't get reintubated overnight). Add in to this the fact that both of us want him to succeed so bad, and being in his room is a very jumpy time again.

It's not like going home is any better. If we're NOT in his room, we're worrying that he's struggling for breath and about to get re-intubated, but if we are in his room, we're constantly watching the vital stats and worrying that he's going to have a spell. Nonetheless, it's been a lot of fun getting to see his face, and especially his mouth. While Maggie and I agree that his eyes and upper face look like me, his mouth reminds both of us of her late father. Of course we can't make any real pronouncements, but without the breathing tube he does look increasingly like a real baby, and we think he's just so cute.

So here are our next big milestones. We're pretty sure he'll not get reintubated any quicker than tomorrow, unless he has a prolonged spell where he can't get good oxygen sats. He'll get a new blood gas test in the morning, along with a new x-ray (his x-ray this morning shows that his lungs look a little whiter, but that is explainable because his previous x-ray showed that his lungs were a little over-inflated, which is pretty normal for the ventilator). As long as he's at least marginal for those two, he'll stay on a little longer. The medium-term test, though, is going to be his weight. If he can keep gaining weight on the CPAP, he'll stay on it. If he doesn't start gaining good weight by next week, he'll probably get reintubated.

Keep thinking positive thoughts for us. It's going to be a long weekend, I think.


At 12:44 AM, Blogger Bill Hooker said...

I have everything crossed that can be crossed.


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