Saturday, February 9, 2013


I saw this article on a preemie resource page on Facebook this morning, and I felt it was definitely worth sharing.

I know I, like so many others, had never heard of RSV until Ryan was getting closer to discharge from the NICU and everyone was buzzing about how careful we would need to be, especially during flu season.  With Dave and I being teachers, and a two year old big sister in preschool and other classes where she is constantly exposed to other kids, I feel like my anxiety over him getting sick is really peaking these days.  My students have already become used to me being the crazy teacher who uses hand sanitizer 435986938567 times a day.  I even wore a mask while teaching one day during a week when it seemed like there were more and more kids going home sick.  Whenever we come home, we "scrub in" and change our clothes before we go near Ryan.  Even with all that, he still got RSV in December. 

His poor lungs just aren't ready to handle this virus.  If Dani gets it (which we think she did in November), she's down for the count for about a week, but she'll recover.  Ryan needs hospitalization to get through it if it gets really bad.  Hence the anxiety.  Right now he's waking up congested in the mornings.  He doesn't have the strength to cough up whatever he brings up out of his lungs, so he gags on it.  Right now, we are maintaining things by keeping his oxygen turned up a little, sleeping with a humidifier, giving him extra nebulizers, and lots of saline with a little bit of suctioning to help him clear it out.  We are also so blessed that he's been able to get the synagis shot this year.  This is not a fun shot for the babies, it's thick and painful going in, but it's necessary.  The serum is full of the antibodies that fight off RSV.  As the article mentions, babies born too early don't get the full benefit of all the antibodies that are normally transferred from mother to baby.  This shot helps compensate for that and specifically targets the RSV.

When he was hospitalized for RSV, they told me that the worst usually comes 3-5 days after the first signs of symptoms.  So, if this it is RSV that he's dealing with right now, we should be getting past the worst of it today or tomorrow.  In which case, he's handling it like a champ.  He's up to 1 liter of oxygen, and I probably could've weaned it down a little yesterday, but I figured it wouldn't hurt to give him a little more time to rest and recover and help him through this.

Thank you for continuing to pray for our little guy.  He's such a trooper, you'd hardly even notice he was sick other than the random coughing fits and the nasal-y/congested sounding breathing that probably only Dave and I notice.  And please, take precautions this flu season.  It's been a rough year for these viruses, and the season isn't over yet.

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