So, Alex and Grant had upper GI tests today and it was conccluded that niether of them have pyloric stenosis. Alex does have a pylorus that spasms, but he should grow out of that.
So, now on to something else to figure out why they won't eat consistantly. Possibly Monday we will start something I am calling "controlled hunger." They will let Alex and Grant be babies and allow them to determine when they want to eat!
HA... who would have thought that they might just want to eat when they are hungry, and not be force fed!! **note the sarcasm!! They won't let them starve. If they won't demand to eat after so many hours they will make sure they wake them up to feed them. So, we'll see.
About 5 days ago all 3 of the boys started having feeding problems. It's very common for them to spit up a couple of ml's during a feeding. Suddenly they started projectile vomiting 15-20 ml's. After 3 days with no improvement Dr. R decided to order ultrasounds on each one of their stomachs. After reviewing the ultrasound he decided to do additional testing including an upper GI screening with the radiologist in an attempt to confirm or deny what is called Pyloric Stenosis.
Pyloric Stenosis (PS) is where the muscle between your stomach and intestines isn't developed properly. This restricts or prevents food from passing into the intestines and instead forces it back up the way it came in.
Before the upper GI screening Dr. R also showed the ultrasound results to the surgeon and the radiologist. Together they determined that Grant and Alex had problems and that it was better to perform the surgery and not waist time and the boy's energy with the upper GI screening. After discussing this with Jess and I, we decided to take their advice and move forward with surgery today for the two. At 12:45 this afternoon Grant went into lapriscopic surgery while the nurses preped Alex to follow right after.
About an hour later Grant came back upstairs and the surgeon came to us with a puzzling look on her face. She informed us that when she got in there everything looked perfectly normal and fluids were passing freely as they should. To confirm she brought in another surgeon (who performed Ethan's NEC surgery) to take a look. Both decided that everything looked normal. She also called the radiologist to confirm what they saw in the ultrasound. With these findings they immediately cancelled Alex's surgery.
Alex will get the upper GI screen tomorrow and if they can confirm or not any issues with the pyloris muscle. If he does, then it probably will be into surgery for him (but we won't be sure if that will be Friday or next Monday).
One good thing did come from this. Grant's belly-button was herniated and looking quite odd (major outtie!!). Since she was accessing his stomach through his belly-button she fixed it when done with the surgery. He now has a very nice looking innie. I guess you could say he got his first plastic surgery. :)
So, back to the upper GI screening tomorrow, for both Alex and Grant, to find out if they can see what's happening. They will be looking to see if there is something else going on with Grant other than PS.
Your continuous prayers are greatly appreciated. We'll update as soon as we know something more. Right now everyone continues to look at the boys completely perplexed.
Here a a few pictures that we have taken over the past couple of days. Video of Grant playing peek-a-boo with mommy!
Alex and Ethan, do you see the twins in them? Ethan still has high billiruben levels so he is a bit more yellow than Alex. He is also still almost 1.5lbs smaller than Alex. Grant was wearing a new outfit that we got from our friends the Holland's and Faubions! They are such cute outfits.
They are doing pretty well. They are still not quite ready to take everything by bottle. We think Ethan will be soon, but he still wears out after 2 straight feedings by bottle. We are going slow just to make sure he still gains weight and doesn't get too exhausted. Grant and Alex are doing every other feed by bottle. They are kind of doing well with that but they are still not consistant with taking the amounts they need to take. Hopefully they get it soon.
Please keep up the prayers for them and for James and I. Prayers for patience are always good! :) Thank you.
A couple of pictures and videos of my babies!! Ethan was just entertained as could be in his bouncy seat.
Alex fell asleep funny in his seat. It looked so uncomfortable, but he was sound asleep so we didn't disturb him.
Grant was trying to eat from a bottle. He is getting there on this, but isn't showing the signs that he wants the bottle. Who knows when he will "get it" and start demanding it. We'll see. When he does though, he can come home. Please pray that he "gets" it soon.
Today, October 19, is offically the boys' due date. They are 40 weeks gestationally today! In 2 more days (not counting today) they will be 10 weeks old. It has been a really long, hard, and fun 10 weeks. I hope that soon these boys will be out of the hospital. They are doing well though. Slowing down some on their growth, but hopefully that is a sign that they are starting to work a bit more on other things, such as learning the bottle.
I thought I would take some comparison pictures to so you how much the boys have grown. I forgot to get their lengths, but here are their weights.
Grant - 7lbs 8oz on 10.18 Grant 3lbs 6oz on 8.18
Ethan - 5lbs on 10.18 (yeah... no one left under 5lbs!!!) Ethan - 1lb 9oz on 8.18 Alex - 6lbs 10oz on 10.18. Alex 2lbs 10oz on 8.18
It has been a pretty busy week for the me, the boys, James, and James' parents. Larry and Peggy are now in town for 6 months to help with the boys. Since the boys aren't home yet, they are going to the NICU to do their care times when I can't go.
The boys have been growing by leaps and bounds this week. Alex hit the 6lb mark. Grant hit the 7lb mark. And Ethan is ever so close to that 5lb mark. Weights as of 10/14 are Alex 6lbs 2oz, Grant 7lbs 5oz, and Ethan 4lbs 14oz.
They are all doing well. We are just working on eating from the bottle. It seems to be like watching grass grow. They don't have many other things happening other than taking full feeds from the bottle once in a while.
Grant seems to be the one that is "getting" it the best right now. Almost every time he takes the bottle he takes a full feed. But if you try to do bottle feeds back to back, he doesn't take the whole bottle the second time. I'm not going to say something specific about when he should be coming home (I don't want to jinx it), but it should be soon!!
Alex has taken quite a few full feeds, but he still has issues taking them every time. He still gets very tired some times. They are also working on getting his reflux figured out. He seems very miserable, but they started him on some meds that should kick in any day and help him. We'll have to see if they help and then things should progress fairly quick for him and then he can come home.
Ethan is doing well with the bottle but usually can only take it once or twice a shift. He just doesn't have the stamina yet to take it any more than that. He does take full feeds once in a while too. And he wants the bottle a lot. We just have to be careful that he doesn't over-do it and use up lots of calories. He could still have issues gaining weight and we don't want that. Before he comes home he is going to have to have one more surgery. He has a hernia that is going to need fixing but they won't do that till right before discharge (which could possibly set back his discharge date, but we'll see.)
I have set a "realistic" goal of getting all the boys home by Thanksgiving. I know, I know! That seems so long away for some of you. But they have so many things that they need to do before they all get home. Now, it could be earlier than that, but Thanksgiving is 6 weeks away, and that seems reasonable to have everyone home. It is a long time for me to think about, but we have been at this 9 weeks and hopefully we won't have to be more than 6 more weeks!
I have been going to the NICU every day. I usually spend 6hours there during the day and once in a while go back for 3 more hours at night. It gets to be exhausting, but it is good practice for when they come home.
Well, here are a couple of pictures for you of the boys. They are 2 months old now! Oh how time flies. Alex Ethan and Mommy Grant in his Halloween outfit from Aunt Donna! (I am eventually going to get a picture with all three of them in their outfits together.)
New weights as of tonight - Alex 5lbs 14oz, Grant 6lbs 12oz, Ethan 4lbs 11oz. They are growing like weeds. Grant graduated to newborn diapers today. Ethan got his broviac (sp?) out yesterday. Basicly they all have to learn how to eat and they can come home!! We'll see who learns the bottle first, but the nurses have their bets on Ethan! Haha... wouldn't that be funny if he is the first to come home. We'll just have to be patient and see. Thanks for the thoughts and prayers.