The NICU Experience Aaron update 50
The NICU Experience
Later Updates
Subject: Aaron update 50
Date: Friday, January 24, 2003 11:09 AM
From: Kevin Quick
To: Aaron Update List

Update 50! Thanks for hanging in there with us, everyone. We’re probably about halfway there. Again, Aaron should be going home around his due date, which is March 17, plus or minus a couple of weeks. Lots of milestones between now and then: weaning off of CPAP completely, weaning off of the nasal cannula, getting the A’s and B’s under control, nipple feeding, etc. And of course, any time anyone would like to opt out of the list, please just send me an e-mail. I know this is a lot of “stuff” to add to your normal day.


Aaron’s primary day nurse Lisa is back, after having been gone for a week. Kathleen talked with her by phone this morning. She said that she is just amazed at the progress Aaron is making: he’s bigger, on nasal cannula now, and even cuter than when she last saw him (aww). Apparently, while Lisa was off, she still checked in from time to time to see how Aaron was doing. She is really a wonderful nurse.

As of 9 a.m. this morning, Aaron had been completely off of CPAP and on the nasal cannula for 24 hours.

Just to answer a couple of questions that I’ve been asked...The nasal cannula DOES supply oxygen, but it doesn’t supply the continuous positive airway pressure that CPAP and the ventilator do. And, the concentration of oxygen in the air that’s supplied by the cannula is adjustable, from 21% oxygen as in ambient air, to 100% which is pure oxygen. Aaron has been in the 40% to 50% oxygen range, with short bursts of 100% oxygen following apneas or “desats” (blood oxygen desaturations). Eventually, he’ll be weaned down to 21%, at which point he won’t need the cannula anymore.

Anyway, Lisa said that after 24 hours on the cannula, Aaron is showing some signs of getting tired, so she’s going to discuss with the doctor whether it might be a good idea for him to go back on CPAP at least for some short periods throughout the day. After feeding this morning (28cc every 3 hours now), Aaron had a big bradycardia that even got Lisa nervous (that’s hard to do), so she wants to be cautious. Better to ease into things now than to set ourselves up for a bigger crash later.

Aaron’s feeding tube has been removed, and will now be reinserted only at feeding times. This is to minimize the irritation that leaving the tube in can cause. One side benefit of this is that Aaron now only has two small pieces of tape on his cheeks to hold the cannula in place; his mustache has been removed. So, that should mean....good pictures this weekend!

Kathleen and I will be going to a car seat class at 2 p.m. this afternoon in Lakeport, where we’ll be purchasing Aaron’s car seat. (Boy, that’s going to make things seem a little more real, driving the car around with a baby car seat in it.) Then, we’ll head down to San Francisco for the weekend. Kathleen had then planned on staying in SF for 2 weeks, but after talking with Lisa this morning, our plans have changed. The week AFTER next week will probably be the week that Aaron will try nipple feeding, and from then on, Kathleen will be indispensable at the NICU. So, Kathleen will probably come home with me next Monday to “get things done.” After that, she’ll be in SF more or less full time until Aaron comes home.

Thank you for your continued love and support. Kathleen and I had a little emotional dip last night that reminded us of how careful we have to be not to let ourselves get overly drained physically, mentally or emotionally. We’re doing OK, but we treasure your continued love, prayers and support.

Love, Kevin & Kathleen