Posted (Tina) in All Posts on September-11-2007

Ella had a stable day yesterday, so mid-day Dr. Kays made some changes.
He noted that the increased octreotide medicine did not make a difference in Ella’s chest fluid output over this past weekend. So, he decided to remove her left chest tube.
Also, Dr. Kays made a few changes on the ventilator. Ella’s oxygen was weened to 36% oxygen (remember that we started at 50%) and 32 breaths per minute (we started at 50).
These are good steps forward for Ella. She did fine initially and into the late night, but this morning the evidence of the changes were not as positive as hoped.
Ella only drained 35 out of her right chest tube and she looks a bit more swollen. Again, this is from fluid accumulation (removal of the left chest tube). Her chest x-ray this morning confirmed that fact: her left side appeared hazy.
Also, her blood gas this morning was not great, as a result of the chest tube removal, fluid accumulation and the difficulty she is having with breathing. The pO2 was fine at 121, but her cO2 was 70 (should be around 40). She will have another blood gas earlier this afternoon.
Based on the results this morning and the fact that she was not settling down for Nurse Andrea, Dr. Kays decided to let her sleep on her left side (she favors that side because she is not laying on her stronger lung and it is easier to breathe). Also, he increased her lasix medicine to 3x per day (helps reduce swelling) and turned the ventilator settings back to where we started. All of these changes in an effort to see if it will help Ella just get over the hump with this fluid issue.
If Ella’s stats do not remain stable over the next few hours and show an improvement in her cO2 level, Dr. Kays will probably be looking to place a new chest tube back in her left side.
One piece of good news from yesterday: Ella’s head gear was removed! Nurse Michelle noted that Ella’s forehead was getting skin degeneration from the blood oxygen monitor (getting too raw). So, she asked Dr. Kays if there was a point in keeping the band on her forehead. Most babies are not kept on the machine that long and since it is a relatively new technology for them and there is not a set protocol, Dr. Kays agreed that it could be removed! Thanks to Nurse Michelle for speaking up!
Last night when we visited Ella, Nurse Michelle was so sweet. She had this pink gown that she had been waiting to put on her! So, sure enough…she said it was time.
As an addition to Ella’s outfit, I received something special the other day in the mail. Tracy Mitchell, the mother of Baby Jonathan, had sent us a card along with a hand-knitted hat she made especially for Ella. That touched our hearts so much.
Please pray for Ella’s fluid issue to resolve. She really needs to reach this milestone before she can take on others.
Also, please pray for our strength to remain strong and for us to be filled with heavenly peace that only God can provide.