Breathing without assistance! (Trial)
Another step forward! At 11am this morning, Robin’s optiflow (breathing assistance) was removed! His lungs are now stronger and he is using his lungs effectively, so the doctor suggested we trial Robin without the optiflow for 12 hours. It was a lovely surprise for Nicki when she arrived at the hospital! It’s lovely to be able to see his little face better, and his cheeks look like they are filling in 🙂
Occasionally, Robins blood oxygen levels drop, (desat). This was happening with the optiflow, and is likely to continue without the optiflow, but it is very minor and no need for concern. The SCBU team will continue to monitor him, and if he gets too tired from breathing on his own, they will put the optiflow back on (hence why it’s a trial). However, if his desat rate does not increase, then they will extend the trial for a further 12 hours, and measure the desat rates again. If we get through 24 hours, we might be clear of the optiflow for good! It’s very good news!
Nicki spoke to one of the nurses about expected timeframes for getting Robin home. Peter and Nicki both have the expectation that it may be around his due date (January 6th) but we may be able to get him home for Christmas. The nurse Nicki spoke to today, said he might be able to go home even earlier than that – but there are a number of checkpoints he needs to pass first.
These checkpoints include:
* No more caffeine (he has caffeine each morning which stimulates his respiratory and circularity systems)
* Weight of 2kg (child car seats / capsules are only designed for a baby with a minimum weight of 2kg)
* Able to breast feed – but ok to be supplemented with bottle or gavage feeds (gravity feed milk via nasal gastric tube)
*Able to self maintain temperature, heart rate, respiratory rate and oxygen saturation levels
Once Robin has meet these checkpoints, we would then be able to apply to stay overnight in the hospital with him, as a trail run. If all goes well, we could take him home as early as mid December!
Going home means a lot of additional precautions though, including restricting visitors, being ridiculously cautious of infection, and A LOT of washing hands & using hand sanitiser. At least we have some solid milestones to look towards though! If we get off of optiflow, the next goal will be to change from continuous perfuser feeds to bi-hourly gavage feeds.
Visitors: über Oma, great Aunty Lyn & Granny Suzy
Weight: 1400 grams
Air: no assistance (trial)
Feed: 10ml/hour continuous (perfuser)
Nurses: Heather, Judith