Taking Your Premature Baby Home

Author:

Rachel of tinylittlebaby

As a parent of a premature baby on the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit the one thing you are desperately waiting to hear is the magical words ‘you can take your baby home’

From the moment your baby is born you are waiting to hear those magical words, however for a lot of parents those six words also bring a lot of fear and anxiety.

 Until this time your precious baby has been looked after 24/7 by a number of different types of doctors, nurses and many other heath practitioners. There will have been monitors and high-tech equipment that you have got used to and come to rely on for reassurance whilst on the unit, you will have grown used to this level of support and that there is always someone around for advice and support. So it is understandable that you will be worried and anxious as well as relieved and excited because at home you will be person caring for your baby, a very daunting thought.

The staff on  NICU would not  be letting you take your baby home if they did not think that your baby was well enough to leave NICU and that you were not capable of taking care of your baby.

Before leaving the hospital you will have been given training in how to perform basic resuscitation.  A lot of units have  rooms where you can stay overnight with your baby with the NICU nurses just next door, this can help give you the confidence you need to know that you can take care of your baby.

Once discharged from the unit you will still have a lot of support from health professionals, some of those involved will be your GP and health visitor, A lot of units have a specialist nurse who will visit you at home soon after being discharged to offer support and advice and your child will possibly have a pediatrician who will follow their progress.

If your baby was very premature, needed oxygen or was ventilated they may be at more risk of infection, some steps you can take to reduce risk of infection are:

  • Make sure everyone who comes into contact with your baby washes their hands.
  • Don\’t take your baby to crowded public places
  • Don\’t take your baby into large air-conditioned places like a shopping centre, supermarkets.
  • Ask people who have had a cold/ fever to refrain from visiting.

Taking your baby home from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit  for the first time is a very special experience and a very large milestone on your journey, take advantage of any help offered from family and friends, make sure to take time for yourself and enjoy being at home with your very special baby.

 For a baby record book designed for babies in NICU visit http://www.tinylittlebaby.co.uk

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/babies-articles/taking-your-premature-baby-home-2640271.html

About the Author

Mother of a premature baby and creator of STARTING LIFE IN NICU  a baby record book  designed for babies who start life in a neonatal intensive care unit http://www.tinylittlebaby.co.uk

Prem2Pram Under New Ownership

My name is Rachel and I have a four year old son. My son was born prematurely and was diagnosed at two days old with a congenital heart defect, he had a very rocky neonatal period and we spent many weeks between the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and a cardiac paediatric intensive care unit (PICU)  we spent his first Christmas on the NICU before finally bring him home.  He is my only child and the light of my life he amazes me every day.

My experience on the NICU inspired me to create Starting life in NICU which is a baby journal designed specifically for premature and sick babies and in 2010 I launched tinylittlebaby

Owner of Prem2Pram

Its through tinylittlebaby that I met a wonderful lady who’s help and advise was invaluable through those early days, that lady was Sue the founder and previous owner of Prem2Pram.  I am honoured to take over Prem2Pram and will continue to run the business with the passion that we both share.

The mother who had another woman’s baby by mistake

Author:  Jenny Johnston
Source: Daily Mail

Carolyn was ecstatic when she became pregnant by IVF. But a bizarre mix-up left her facing a cruel dilemma

Just before the nurses took her newborn baby from her for the final time, they asked Carolyn Savage if she would like them to make up a ‘bereavement box’ for her to take home.

She said she would — well aware that, in time, mementos of the all-too-short moments she had spent with baby Logan would help her come to terms with her loss.

Carolyn recalls watching a nurse hold one little foot while a clay imprint was made; then smiling, somehow, for photographs, as Logan lay on her chest. In all, she spent 45 minutes with her ‘feisty little man’.

Seventeen months on, Carolyn talks of the ‘bereavement process’, concluding that she and husband Sean ‘have done anger and denial and depression. I think we are kind of in acceptance now, but it’s not an altogether straight line’.

Anyone who has lost a child might feel they recognise the emotions the Savages are charting today. But they cannot possibly. For the tragedy is not that baby Logan is dead. He is just someone else’s son.

Logan was the result of an unthinkable IVF mix-up. Although Carolyn carried him for nine months, genetically he belonged to another couple….. Continue reading

Carolyn & Sean Savage

Learn more about Carolyn & Sean’s  inconceivable choice in their recently published book Inconceivable

Cyclopia a rare birth defect

Photograph of foetus with cyclopia

Image via Wikipedia

Cyclopia is one of the rarest forms of birth defect where the baby is born with one eye or two eyes on the forehead of the baby. The one eye is a result of the orbital sockets not forming correctly in the womb. Some cases of cyclopia have been associated with a rare chromosomal condition called Patau Syndrome, which is associated with a person having three instead of the usual two #13 chromosomes.  Cyclopia is also known as synophthalmia which is the fusion of the eyes, however true cyclopia is a rare anomaly in which the organogenetic development of the two separate eyes is suppressed.

Although babies suffering from this type of birth defect are usually still born, a baby believed to be suffering form cyclopia was born by caesarian section in March 2011 and lived for one whole day before he died in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at JJ hospital.

The term “Cyclopia” comes from the Cyclops, the one eyed giants of Greek mythology, a mythical race of lawless giant shepherds who lived in Sicily. They had a single large round eye in the centre of their forehead.

Cyclopia is not confined to the human race, it often occurs in animal populations.   There have been several reports of kittens suffering from cyclopia, these kittens rarely survive and are usually born dead or die within the first few hours of life.

What if it was your premature baby!

What if it was yours?

It always strikes me as disturbing how fierce arguments over the right time to let unborn babies live and the need to let premature babies die coincide at around 23 or 24 weeks.

Where termination is concerned, a 24-week old baby is considered too far developed to have its life snuffed out. At the same stage a premature baby is, apparently, too expensive to be allowed to live.

The BBC2 documentary 23 Weeks: The Price Of Life examined the arguments for leaving babies born at 23 weeks to pass away without resuscitation or medical intervention.

Behind the arguments effectively to bin life at its early stages is, of course, money.

The price of life is seemingly too high for the liking of some highly-paid NHS officials – like Dr Daphne Austin, for instance.

Doctor Austin, an adviser to local health trusts, says keeping early babies alive is only prolonging their agony.

Funds would be better spent on care for cancer sufferers or the disabled.

This concerning film did much to promote and support Dr Austin’s arguments – a bit of a worry in itself – which were anchored in cash.

She said the NHS was spending around £10m a year resuscitating babies born early and keeping them alive in incubators and on ventilators.

But despite round-the-clock care from teams of experienced doctors and nurses, just nine per cent left hospital – the rest died. And only one in 100 would grow up without some form of disability – the most common including blindness, deafness and cerebral palsy.

One in 100. Is that one baby worth the expense and effort required for a fight for life?

It most definitely is, if it’s your baby.

First published at 08:57, Saturday, 12 March 2011
Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk
Anne Pickles

Don’t write off premature babies

THE NHS spends £10million a year resuscitating babies born at 23 weeks and keeping them on incubators and ventilators.  But despite 24/7 care, 91 PER CENT of them die. And only one in 100 survivors grows up without disability. The most common problems include blindness, deafness and cerebral palsy.

Leading NHS official Dr Daphne Austin ignited the debate this week when she said in a BBC documentary that keeping the babies alive simply “prolonged” their agony and argued the money would be better spent on cancer sufferers or the disabled.

Guidelines state doctors should not try to resuscitate babies born before 22 weeks as they are too under developed, but those born between 22 and 25 weeks should be given intensive care.

Around 350 babies a year are born at 23 weeks and nearly all are resuscitated as families cling to the hope they will survive.

Here, two mums talk of their 23-week premature babies and why NOT to give up hope.

POLICE officer Lucy Kirwan says her daughter, Matilda, was one of the lucky ones. Lucy, 30, lives in Stourbridge, West Midlands, with her husband Craig, 31, also a police officer, two-year-old son Charlie and Matilda, seven months.

“CHARLIE was born normally. So when I fell pregnant with twin girls last year it didn’t occur to us there would be problems. But at 22 weeks I was told there was a problem with the fluid around the babies.

After a weekend of not feeling very well, I went to Birmingham Women’s Hospital where a scan showed only one heartbeat. The next day, my waters broke.

Craig and I had spent the weekend on the internet working out what would happen if our baby was born at 27 or 28 weeks. We never thought we would have to worry about what would happen if she was born at 23 weeks.

A few days later I went into labour. I was only 23 weeks and six days pregnant.

We’d gone from buying things for the twins and feeling we’d got past the “safe” point of the 20-week scan to losing one baby, Alice Rose, and preparing to give birth to her very premature twin, Matilda. I didn’t have much hope.

Matilda did cry briefly when she was born, then her organs couldn’t cope and the doctors spent half an hour resuscitating her before taking her away. There were about 15 doctors and nurses in the room and alarms were going off.

But I had to give birth to her twin, then I had emergency surgery because the placenta was still attached so I wasn’t very aware of what was happening to Matilda…. continue reading

By Emma Cox
Source: The Sun

Premature babies battle for survival at ‘edge of life’

The NHS spends more than £10m a year on babies born at 23 weeks

Babies born prematurely in the 23rd week of pregnancy exist on the very edge of life. A few go on to become “miracle babies”, but most die. The figures are stark, only nine out of 100 will survive, and of that number most are disabled. Is it always right to keep them alive?

“I can’t really get my head round how they’ve managed to keep her alive.”

Lucy’s daughter Matilda was born four months early at Birmingham Women’s Hospital, weighing one pound one ounce.

Within 20 seconds of her birth, her tiny body was placed into a plastic bag to prevent her losing too much heat or moisture.

She was carefully transferred into an incubator and hooked up to tubes and gadgets. Cutting-edge technology has been keeping her alive for four weeks.

Had Matilda been born one week earlier at 22 weeks – she would usually have been considered a miscarriage.

One week later at 24 weeks, her chances of survival would be much higher.

Thanks to decades of improving medical science 23 weeks is now considered the “edge of viability”. It is one week less than the limit for abortion at 24 weeks. .. continue reading

By Adam Wishart

Documentary Maker, 23 Week Babies: The Price of Life

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