Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Adventures of Mackenzie Jane - Update 1

A few days later we have much to be thankful for and hopeful for the future. 

Mackenzie's kidneys have finally kicked in and are starting to function normally. Her electrolytes, sodium, and a few other labs are all back to normal. There is a particular test that they are watching that shows the kidneys were damaged has finally started to decrease meaning that her kidneys are healing. With her labs showing such vast improvement they were able to remove the umbilical IV line so that her belly button can heal. 

She is being weened off of oxygen slowly. She spends a few hours without it and then gets a smaller rate of flow once she needs the help again. 

She began getting formula feedings  yesterday at 4 cc's every 3 hours and that has continued. This morning they doubled her dose and allowed her to be fed by bottle. WE FINALLY GOT TO HOLD HER. Lauren was able to feed her the tiny bottle and hold her for a while this morning. As the day continued, her feedings continued to go well, so the docs had her feeding tube removed.

The big news of the day were the results of her brain scans. The MRI was completed last evening and the results although not what we hoped for, were what everyone was expecting. The scan showed that MJ did suffer a brain injury as a result of the blood loss and lack of oxygen pre and during delivery. The good news is that the injury locations are all far away from the brain stem and cerebral cortex. They are in parts of the brain that don't fully develop and activate until 2-3 months into life. The neurologist said that the miraculous thing about babies is that they are able to survive and recover from injuries that would be catastrophic to an adult or even an older child. His hope is that as MJ's brain develops it should compensate and wire itself to avoid any injured areas. He can't offer too certain of a prognosis. He expects that if there are any developmental problems that they will hopefully be minor. We will continue to get MRI's completed periodically to monitor those damaged areas to make sure they improve or at least do not increase in size.

Her results show that she did suffer a seizure during delivery which is where the damage came from. As a precaution they have had her on an anti-seizure medication that she will continue to be on for at least the next six months as we monitor her progress and development.

The EEG results will be discussed tomorrow, it should give us a better idea if MJ is still at risk for future seizures and help the docs finalize a plan for the short term and look at options for the long term.

All in all, we have so many blessing and things to be thankful for. We, again, cannot thank everyone enough for their thoughts, prayers, and good will. We will continue to update everyone as we learn more about our little girl's future.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Adventures of Mackenzie Jane

Hey everyone, a few people have been asking us exactly what's going on with Lauren and our sweet little girl.

I have included the timeline and details as best I can below. We have talked and will continue to try and update the blog as we get more news about Mackenzie over the coming days.

As some of you know Lauren was having some severe varicose vein problems during the last half of her pregnancy. As a result doc wanted to induce her on her due date. We were both torn about what to do. It wasn't completely medically necessary but very reasonable for Lauren's issues. All the way up through Wednesday morning Lauren was back and forth about going through with the induction. Thanking the Lord today that she listened to her instinct and decided to go through with it. It saved our baby's life and probably hers as well.

Lauren started the induction process on Wednesday afternoon and things went well. Baby looked good and contractions and dilation were starting to pickup. Everything went well overnight as she was having small contractions all night. They started petocin around 430 Thursday morning and things started picking up even more; stronger contractions more dilation, things were moving along well. Around 530 her water broke and was really bloody. The nurse checked her and called the doc who all agreed that it was probably just water and some cervical bleeding as a result of labor but wanted to be safe so they stopped the petocin and gave her a drug to stop contractions to monitor her and MJ. Doc rushed in for the day and came in to look at Lauren and check MJ. They did an ultrasound and everything looked good. Doc wanted to watch baby for a little and if she didn't like it we were gonna go with a c section as a precaution before it became an emergency. MJ was having minor dips in her heart rate during each contraction. Even after the contractions stopped, her heart rate still dropped a little in small, barely noticeable increments. The doctor watched MJ and she didn't like that her rate dipped just a little bit so they went in for the section. The hospital wanted her to wait until after another surgery in front of us so the doc declared it an emergency so they would be first in line. So they had to put Lauren to sleep because it's faster. Once they opened her up the uterus was full of blood and they thought it was just an abruption. MJ came out white as a ghost and not very responsive. It turns out that Lauren had a condition called Vasa Previa which is a problem where the umbilical cord attaches to the placenta wrong. This caused the umbilical vessels to be weak and when her water broke it ruptured two major vessels on the cord. The blood was some of Lauren but mostly MJ's.
They suspect MJ was hypoxic for a little while and suffered some damage from the lack of oxygen. She has some kidney and liver damage and possibly had some seizures right after birth. So they sent her to the children's hospital NICU in Jackson to receive a cooling treatment where they lower her core temp to 93 degrees for 72 hours to prevent swelling of the brain and help her body recover. She is responding to treatment, but we are really holding our breath for the MRI and EEG (brain wave study) to determine how much if any brain damage occurred. There's no way to know until then. So all we can do is pray.
The condition Lauren had her doc mentioned right before the section as a potential cause but doubted it because it's very rare and she hadn't seen one in over 15 years. There is no way to diagnose prior to delivery, no way to see where the cord is on the placenta so it's a gut call by the doc if there is a lot of blood. Doc talked to me after Lauren was stable and back in our room recovering. We were very lucky that we were already in the hospital. If Lauren had gone into labor at home and broke her water outside the hospital, the outcome would have been dramatically worse for them both. So we are very blessed that the good Lord gave them both back to me, just a matter of time to see how strong MJ is and how well her body can recover. We got some hopeful news from her neonatologist this morning. But we still have some hurdles to climb and the great unknown of her brain injury. Only time will tell. Lauren and I do not have the words to express our gratitude for the outpouring of support and prayers from our family, friends, and co-workers. Please continue to keep our sweet little girl in your prayers as we wait and hope for the best.