More Ups and Downs

Well it’s been a crazy week to say the least! Lots of ups and downs. Life with a NICU baby is a roller coaster. We have 3 NICU babies so we are living a roller coaster times 3!

Mason and Logan both had their PDA ligation surgeries this week – Logan on Wednesday and Mason yesterday (on Thursday). They both did great! The doctor said Logan did better than most babies. Then Mason did better than Logan. So they’re overachievers (and they’re competitive). I’ll take it!

Here’s a picture of both of them after their surgeries. (They look the same as before).



Here’s a brief update for each baby over the last few days:
This poor kid can’t catch a break! He did great with his surgery yesterday. In fact, his test results were better after the surgery than before (which isn’t typical – usually babies get a little worse before they get better). Well today Mason got worse (maybe from the surgery and maybe not). His X-ray this morning showed that he has PIE (pulmonary interstitial emphysema). It sounds scary doesn’t it?!! PIE is basically where air leaks out of the vessels in the lungs and into the walls of the vessels (it looks like bubbles on the X-ray). So they switched him to a new ventilator – a jet ventilator. The jet ventilator is similar to the oscillating ventilator that Logan was on earlier – it gives Mason lots of short breaths. The main difference (that I know of) is that the oscillating ventilator helps the baby exhale while the jet ventilator does not pull air out. The jet ventilator is supposedly perfect for treating PIE. I sure hope so! The doctor says we may see improvement within 12 hours.

Mason has also started looking more like Logan over the last few days. His hair is turning light blond (and is falling out). Yesterday Brian sent me a picture of Mason and called him Logan. I figured it out but it did take me a minute. I guess only time will tell if they are identical (or look close to the same).

Logan has been, well, Logan the last few days. He’s just chilling out in his box, enjoying the drugs they gave him for the surgery. He’s recovering well and mostly just sleeping. He had his PDA ligation surgery first – on Wednesday – so I was really worried about him that day. Of course he did great! I wasn’t nearly as worried when Mason got the same surgery – with the same surgeon – after I saw how well Logan did.

Mr. James decided to start misbehaving this week. That’s what the doctors say when a baby doesn’t do what they want him to do. James started getting bad results on his blood gas tests so last night the doctors reintubated him. As of right now it seems that James just got tired of breathing on his own. They tested him for infection and redid his echo to see if his PDA had reopened. His results were great – no sign of infection and his PDA has remained closed. So for now he is back on the ventilator and he’s just resting. Hopefully he can rest for a few days then get back off the ventilator. He seems to be enjoying it so far. Right after they put the tube in he was laying there sucking on the tube. Maybe he thought they gave him a permanent paci that wouldn’t fall out!

While Mason and Logan were getting all the attention this week with their move to Children’s Hospital and their surgeries, James got to spend extra time with Nina and Pop. His nurse even let him out of his bed and let Nina and Pop hold him for a few minutes! Fun times for James! Brian and I also made time to go to UAMS to hold James for over an hour each the night before he was reintubated. I’m so glad! He’s so sweet. I could just hold him all day long every day! I guess now I’ll have to wait a while longer until he gets his ventilator out again.

Our New Home at Arkansas Children’s Hospital:
We are slowly getting used to our new home at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. It isn’t nearly as cozy or comfortable as UAMS. At UAMS the NICU has all private rooms. At Children’s we are in a room with 6 babies (eventually half of them will be ours). I feel like I’m always in the way. The good news is that we ended up with the same team of doctors that we had at UAMS. I love our doctors from UAMS so this makes me way more comfortable about the move. I’ve decided that neonatologists are my favorite type of doctors. Especially ours. Yesterday Dr. Ross spent 45 minutes talking to me about Mason and Logan. Then last night another neonatologist (the one who was there for the delivery) spent about an hour with Brian. These are really special people. I feel really blessed that they are part of our babies’ lives (and ours too of course). I hope no one ever needs a neonatologist, but if you do, just know that they are awesome people.

James will join his brothers at Arkansas Children’s Hospital sometime this weekend probably. He has been hanging out at UAMS by himself since Mason and Logan were transferred a few days ago. We like UAMS better but because Mason can’t go back (because his head needs to be monitored by neurology and neurosurgery specialists) we will go ahead and have James moved over to Children’s so they can all be together.

Other than the actual NICU rooms, we really like Children’s Hospital. They really cater to families so it’s a very warm and welcoming environment. And Addison likes it better too which is great. There’s actually a playground on the same floor as the NICU so she can go outside and take a break when we go up there.


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