In my introductory post, I said that I'm a nurse working in Nursery/ NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) department. It's a tough job yet rewarding. For almost 3 years in the area, I cannot count how many tiny human beings I have nursed- full term or preterm newborns. There are so many success stories we have followed. This is my first time to share.
Currently, we have a premature baby girl, 34 weeks by Ballard score but only weighing 700 grams. Her birth length is only 33 centimeters. Can you imagine how tiny she is? Similar to the regular shoebox. She's the tiniest and the most fragile baby we admitted alive in our unit. Upon birth, we thought that the prognosis is grim. The doctors and other medical staffs did not expect her to live longer than 48 hours because of her laboratory & radiology results. Some of her blood counts are not within the normal limits. She have Cardiomegaly or enlarged heart, murmurs, minimal ascites, and they cannot visualize her urinary bladder in the ultrasound. So many abnormalities. Although it hurts, the family already prepared themselves and accepted the possibilities. They already refused to put her in the incubator and even resuscitation. At first, we only placed her under infant warmer. And the only supports we hooked to the baby are oxygen inhalation via nasal cannula, IV Fluid, and pulse oximeter for monitoring the oxygen saturation.
Until one time, on my shift, urine output is noted. It's a spark of hope not only for us healthcare providers, but especially to the family. Her eldest sibling didn't survived due to prematurity and abnormalities also. I immediately notified the attending physician. So she proceed the proper medical management for this miracle baby, as said by everyone on the hospital. We expected her to be very sick. But she cries well and very active. We give her feedings thru nasogastric tube. She's a fighter. With every cry, she's like saying "I want to live!". Now, she's already 10 days old.
Kangaroo Care Time. The mother does her best to visit her baby everyday and do this. It's their ultimate bonding.
Every single day, me and my co-staffs also fight to keep this precious one alive. Every move must be refined in order to prevent harm to her fragile skin. As of now, she's fine. She doesn't need oxygen support. However, her blood glucose level is not stable and she have edemas on her extremities. We're hoping that she could make it through,will become a "NICU grad" and eventually goes home with her mother, just like the other preterms we took care of.
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