Sunday, June 28, 2009


Well, it's been a heckuva few days in Robbie's world.

Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, Robbie was really restless, up several times during the night and just generally grumpy. I couldn't figure out what was wrong until 9am Wednesday morning when Robbie started coughing.

We've been EXTREMELY fortunate that Robbie has shown no signs of chronic lung disease so far. But being a preemie, even a healthy one, his lungs are less developed than another baby his size. If a full-term baby's lungs are straws, Robbie's are coffee stirrers. So it doesn't take much to gum up the works. So I called the doctor right away.

That afternoon, Dr. P declared his lungs & ears clear. Just a chest cold. I was relieved until she added "but I will say, he does sound like a kid who's going to start wheezing tomorrow. If he does- bring him back." Ominous.

Thursday was pretty much the same as Wednesday until late in the evening. But just before bedtime, he seemed to be breathing very heavily. I wasn't quite sure what qualified as wheezing but wanted to err on the side of caution, so I called the answering service. A nurse from Children's Hospital called back and went over his symptoms. In the end, we decided that he wasn't wheezing, but he was working harder to breathe than we'd really like, so to keep an eye on him.

After he went to bed, he seemed fine. Slept pretty well and sounded okay. But by morning, he didn't sound so great. It was the same deeper breathing as before, but just at the end of it, it

So I decided, once again, to call the doctor. They had us come right in.

I truly expected to be told I was over-reacting and to just let him get over. Dr. P isn't in the office on Fridays so we saw the covering doctor.

I swear, while we were in the exam room waiting to be seen, he went from not-quite-right to very-very-wrong. There was no question it was a wheeze. The nurse came in and had a look at him. She asked if we had a nebulizer. I told her no and she replied, "I bet you get one today."

The doctor came in a minute later and declared to Robbie, "You sound awful!"

They did a pulse ox and his oxygen saturation was 94%. It should be 95-100. Not scary bad, but not good.

So they did a nebulizer treatment with some Albuterol to open up his lungs. Checked his oxygen again- 95%. Better, but still not great and he still sounded horrible. So he got a 2nd treatment. Still 95%, still wheezing.

That was when I heard the words I don't ever want to hear again. "I think he's going to need to be admitted." DARN DARN DARN!

We discussed hospital options (deciding to go with our "usual hospital" (How sad that we HAVE a "usual hospital.") because it has private rooms.) and the doctor went off to set up the admittance.

The doctor came back and said that the hospital didn't want to do a direct admit, but preferred that we come to the ER for a complete work up before admittance.

So off to the ER we went.

At the ER, they did another Albuterol treatment (no change) and a chest X-ray to check for pneumonia.

No one thought he had pneumonia because he didn't have a fever and frankly, wasn't "acting sick." Yes, his breathing sounded like crap, but other than being cranky about the coughing, he was really pretty happy and playful. I certainly knew he was grumpier than usual, but it's not like he was whining, crying, clinging or lethargic.

But then the chest X-ray came back with a hazy spot on one lung. Pneumonia was suddenly a possibility.

That earned Robbie some blood work. Needles. Poor Robbie.

In the meantime, they decided to give Robbie a round of steroids and another breathing treatment.

This time, it was like night and day. Suddenly he was breathing normally and quietly. And the grumpiness was gone. He was a happy kid.

Then the blood work came back great. No elevated white blood cells (no sign of infection) and a marker for inflammation was zero. YAY!

The theory about his lung haziness is that because he pukes so much, he probably occasionally aspirates some of it. He lung probably always looks cruddy but he's able to compensate for it. It's not ideal, but manageable.

The doctor asked what I thought. I said he seemed SO much better. He agreed and said we could go home. They set us up with a nebulizer for home and gave us scripts for steroids and Albuterol. They called our doctor's office to let them know the outcome and the doctor asked that we bring Robbie in on Saturday for a follow up. As luck would have it, Dr. P was working Saturday.

The night went pretty well. Robbie seemed so much clearer and happier. He woke up Saturday morning sounding pretty good.
We called the office and they had us come straight in.

As we arrived at the office, he started wheezing again. He was overdue for a breathing treatment, but he sounded SO bad, I was honestly afraid they were going to send us to the hospital again.

We got in there and they checked his oxygen saturation again and they were at 96%. Big relief! They gave him another treatment while we were there and he cleared up again.

The only bad news was that he was starting to get an ear infection. So we got some antibiotics added to our regimen.

Overall, Robbie's doing okay. This morning he was pretty crusty again, but after his steroids and the breathing treatments he was much clearer again.

As luck would have it Robbie has a well-baby check on Tuesday (which yes, will make his 4th trip to the doctor in a week) and I'm hoping by then things have drastically improved.

Keep us in your prayers!

And for a few pictures-

Grumpy Robbie at the zoo.

We met our friend DaRonda and rode the train!

It was REALLY hot that day, so mommy kept me soaked with water to keep me cool.

I'm still fascinated by my birthday balloons.

Since they don't float any more, they're down on my level.

I really love my birthday Moose, too! That's his leg in my arms.

I love sleeping in my own crib these days.

I can even hold myself up on the side.

Though sometimes it's tricky to hang on!

Mommy? Can I eat the camera now?



The Bunch Family said...

Ugghhh!! We'll hope he feels better soon. Glad that you didn't have to go to the Palace, though! He looks so darn cute anyway!