Since then we have been lucky enough to have no further problems. We did have breastfeeding troubles because my milk supply just never seemed to fully kick in, so I combined fed (breast, ebm and formula top ups) until she was 4 months old and then I went to formula feeding. We saw the paeds pretty regularly until she turned 1 - I think we saw them at 6 weeks, 3 mnths, 6 months and again when she was 1. When she was 1 they said they she was really at the same level as her peers and no need to see them anymore. Now at 20 months for us personally you would never know that she was premature unless you asked. She did stay on the small side for a while but again is really catching up to the other kids now in height and weight.
Hope it all goes well for you and congrats on your new bubba!! xxx
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08-02-2012 10:14 #11Senior Member
- Join Date
- Jan 2009
19-02-2012 16:28 #12
Hey there, it is so great to hear all the positive stories from those with premmies and you guys who understand life in the SCNursery.
Yes, the standard for release from hospital in Australia is for bub to hold own temp, be gaining weight and at least be 2.2kg, and taking all feeds by suck. Most of these events will occur a little before bub's due date if no setbacks. Most hosps don't release with feeding tubes unless ongoing feeding issues happen, like serious long-term stuff.
Our baby son was born at 34w5d due to severe placental abruption. He was a planned prem delivery, as he'd stopped growing (only 50g a week in utero last few weeks- he did 50g a day once delivered had and started gaining). Had threatened pre-term labour at 26w which was mercifully stopped, and decision was made to pull him out when it got too hairy (40pc fetal death rate with concealed placental abruption). We were sent to a hosp with a NICU for pregnancy care and v closely monitored. Was induced and had a natural birth, thankfully. When he was born he was size of a 31w bub, 1.7kg. Thank god he could breathe ok and had a strong suck reflex due to all the steroids they pumped into us to strengthen him up in case he came really early. Started breastfeeding straight away, but couldn't sustain it around the clock. Was in isolette (humidicrib) for a fortnight and all up in hosp for just over a month. Out of the NICU after 2days and moved closer to home to a much quieter SCN after 4days (65bed NICU to a 12 bed SCN), much more comforting and less like being a guest in the starship enterprise NICU. Yes, he was under lights for jaundice, had IV first few days and feeding tube he pulled out at the 3wk mark. Pulling the tube was a triumph, all nurses said it would have to go back in, but he took to his suck feeds really well and surprised us all.
Your beautiful bub is sustained by all those tubes and monitors and is in the right place. It's exhausting spending 16hrs a day in the SCN, I personally got absolutely no sleep AT ALL for the first 4days. It's more physically and emotionally exhausting than having a full term bub at home. I finally got sleep when he came home and it was bliss! We had a few scares with prem issues like heart murmurs, and bad times with reflux (par for the course) but on the whole our guy was and is so healthy and I really hope yours is the same.
Pay careful attention to maintaining your milk supply if u BF'ing. Hire a good pump or buy a Medela Swing. The stress and being away from bub sometimes makes lactation difficult. Fenugreek (from Health food shop) or Motilium tabs (from doctor) can help maintain supply.
When bub is discharged they give you a premmie feeding plan, and lots of handouts. Do read the stuff on baby body language~ it's golden. Use the time there to learn lots from the nurses if you can take it in. They like you to take baby's temp a bit for the first week home and to wake your little bub for feeds, not let them sleep too long (yet). Also not travel in the car too much for first fortnight home, it's stressful for a little tiny bub. You'll see the MCHN more often for weigh ins when home.
They like to correct for age to give the little ones every chance to reach their milestones as they would if they were full term. Your babies immune system started on their birthday, so solids can start at 4-6m or whenever ready. Developmentally, the truth lies somewhere between real and corrected age. My experience has been similar to the other mums in that my bub has had some milestones at the right time, others 6weeks later (corrected age) but mostly either early or somewhere in between. All bubs are diff and premmies with few probs do catch up SO fast. Our guy is now 75th centile for corrected age and 50th for real age. 7months now and you'd never know he was prem. Is 7.6kg and has 4 words under his belt already.
Good luck to you and bub. My experience in SCN had a huge, positive impact on me and my partner~ he was so well trained after a month in nursery! Remember to use the resources provided (Life's little Treasures, Angel babies foundation and SCnurses), the other Mum's in nursery are a great support. Us mums are out here, too, PM me if you need any specific advice, support or a chat. Do give us an update, hopefully your bub will be home within the week. Best Wishes, Baroness M.
19-02-2012 21:49 #13
For me, I spent the days after crying in the bathtub wishing he was still moving in my belly. I found it really hard to relinquish control to the SCN and not be involved in DS first 2 weeks, I was there every single feed. Every hospital is different, some nurses were extremely supportive, some barked orders at you ie. is that all the breast milk?? We need more, go sit down and pump some! Stress for me had a huge impact on how much I was able to provide.
Post natal depression hit me a few months after ( I seemed to have a delayed reaction to traumatic experiences).
Being pg this time I am extremely worried. I want to maintain some control but lessons learnt means that I know this isn't always possible and you need to put baby first.
20-02-2012 03:39 #14
Thanks Mumdadboyandgirl.. I understand the wishing he was still moving in belly bit. I felt ripped off that i didn't get to 'finish' the last 6weeks of my preg, was shellshocked and it took a while to be a positive experience, but in the end the little SCN we ended up in was so supportive, still text some of the mums.
My over riding sensation was one of relief~ had a really bad placental abruption at the 22wk mark and abt 70% of placenta looked like swiss cheese. It actually fell apart when the midwife delivered it. Preterm threatened labour at 26wks, then 2-3 times weekly fetal monitoring after much jumping up and down begging for more ultrasounds, and a v fortunate occurance of an old school friend becoming my ob by chance, fortnightly US scans. My kind of Pl Ab nearly always ended in heartache and fetal death, so every kick was golden~ I knew he was still alive. Thankfully he was a super active bub, but that made monitoring him hard~ had to be strapped down to bed while delivering, so my yoga-based birth plan went out the window! I'm 38 with few more chances, and I literally begged my Ob to get him out when he'd stopped growing...and before things went pear shaped, which usually happens at 33wks if not b4 with concealed Pl Ab. So, so happy to have a thriving, live baby, and I was prepared for a prem, had toured the NICU and SCN, even consoled myself somehow by buying tinier and tinier clothes. So I was sort-of prepared, and basically lived in the nursery. It was positive, yes, but I did mourn those last lost weeks and I still cry over not having him placed on my chest after birth, being able to look into his eyes, being able to see him at all for 4hours (vomitted my way through the labour and delivery and spent those 4 hours hurling in the shower). I did the bath thing a lot too~ for the first 20wks, till these concerns took over, had gravid. emesis, rabid morning sickness, and spent 8hrs a day rotating between bath and shower.
Good luck this time around, remember you are on a diff path now and although one has to relinquish some control during the birth, odds are you are stronger for your last experience and things will be ok. Let us know how it's going and be in touch if there's any support I can give.
20-02-2012 03:48 #15
oh, and I was so lucky the nurses were so supportive to me, but I have heard comments like the barking about breastmilk you tell of. I learnt which nurses to avoid, which was only one, and was in there 16hrs or more a day, exhausting. Was also lucky they encouraged us to do it all ourselves once we learnt the ropes, unlike in the NICU. That place was super busy, super daunting, and I found it hard to be encouraged to kanga care, only to have my joey ripped away quickly to get him back under lights as fast as poss when jaundiced. But I'm really thankful the SCN looked after us as well as our bub and really, really seemed to care about us as a family. It certainly does teach you that the plan has to go out the window sometimes!
Big hugs to you and your preggie belly.
God, I'm tired. Off to bed for me!
20-02-2012 21:11 #16
Hey Nat11, if you think there's any chance of a reoccurring NICU/SCN stay with next bub, I'd recommend a tour of your local Hosp's facilities with view to how supportive they are of parents. Maybe there's a better hosp for you somewhere nearby. If not, perhaps a visit to the NICU/SCN counsellor (if they have one) is possible, with a discussion of your concerns, so they can improve their service and support so other women don't experience the same thing you did. If you can rewrite your response and post it, I'd love to hear your experience, bad as it sounds, or you can PM me. We all need a good debrief sometimes...
I really hope you don't get a repeat NICU visit, but if you do, try to stay open to the idea that it could be completely diff this time around.
As my experience was positive, I'll tell you that my NICU was at Mercy, Heidelberg, Vic, and the amazingly good SCN was Box Hill Hosp, Vic, just in case you're in the area!
I actually learnt so much in the SCN, it's spurred me on to (maybe) start a business helping new mums learn baby body language; hunger, play and tiredness cues.
I do remember being told (in a stern german accent) when I was 2minutes late for the 2nd feeding 'that we really have to be ON TIME for feedings in future.' I was so exhausted from the birth and no sleep and all the emotional exhaustion, it felt really harsh at the time! One of the things I found useful and which made me feel better, was expressing milk the days before delivery so if I was out for the count, bub could be fed MY milk in my absence. It gave me some feeling of control, and it doesn't hurt to get the supply going in advance. I was annoyed that despite my wishes, the placenta wasn't kept for us or properly autopsied at the time. Being a placental condition that can recur, and a rare form of the condition, it ****ed me that no-one was as interested as I in the thing which nearly took out my bub.
I was lucky that I knew I'd be in the NICU/nursery, had done 60hours of prenatal education and had and still have a great relationship with my natal educator, I did have more support than most. Can't imagine how I'd have fared if I didn't have the heads up. All strength to you Mums who get thrust into this situation without prior knowledge.
I'm also still a bit peeved that I had to beg for him to be delivered before he died in utero, they seem to want to play the wait-and-see game with Placental Abruptions till it's too late. It took yet another wait for yet another fortnightly scan after the one that showed he'd stopped growing, before they really believed he was better out than in. By than, the optimal 33w delivery window had passed. Luckily he was ok and got another 2wks to mature (but not grow), but it felt like russian roulette at the time
Good luck to you, Nat11, I sincerely hope you fare much better this time around. Here for you if you need me, BaronessM.
20-02-2012 21:39 #17
Wow! I was almost exactly the same! I also had pre-eclampsia, DD delivered at 35 weeks and she was 1.9kgs and in open cot. We were told all of the above (maintain temp, all suck feeds, gaining weight etc), however our pediatrician released her when she reached 2kgs as he was pleased with her progress. She dropped to 1.85kgs, and then started to gain weight, so was in SCN for 10 days. Congratulations on your little one. You'll be home before you know it
06-03-2012 17:22 #18
Dd was induced due to preeclampsia at 35w4d and was born weighing 2.95kg and was in special care for 36hours so it all depends on your bubba. My nephew was born at 34 weeks and was in special care for 16days
20-03-2012 20:07 #19
my girl was born at 35 weeks. After my appendix burst at 30 and 6. She was born 6'14 She ended up in NICU and intubated for a week due to imature lung desease and in special care for another week.
21-03-2012 02:10 #20Member
- Join Date
- Jul 2011
my dd was born at 35+? (how bad is that cant even remember how old she was - thats mum brain for you haha!)
She weighed 2.2kg and we were only in hospital for 4 day, she was in an open cot and had the jaundice light for a night
(tho reading a few posting in this section, is a bit concerning for me! cant believe we were only in there for 4 days!
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