April 30, 2008

Make that 2 extra weeks!

Hopefully this is the last time I will have to do this, but the date has changed once again for Max's arrival. Unless I go into preterm labor or Max shows some decelerations on the heart monitor or stops growing, his arrival has been postponed until May 16. This will put me at 36 weeks exactly. The main reason they have pushed us back is because if Max does need dialysis, he is more likely to take to it better since he will be bigger than at 34 weeks. These two weeks will also allow for more brain growth, weight gain, etc. He will benefit more from me doing all of the work for his little body rather than the machines and doctors doing it for him. All of this is being changed for precautionary reasons.

So here's to another 2 weeks in the hospital!!! Just in case I am the only one counting, I have officially spent they entire month of April 2008 in Good Samaritan Hospital! Now, how many of you can say that :o) This is all a very good thing though! I keep reminding myself that it's not about me and it never has been. My main goal is to get this little man home and healthy, and this is the first step in reaching that goal.

I will keep everyone posted, but hopefully this is the last date change! I know I have been asking for this a lot, but please continue to keep Max in your prayers. His little lungs and kidneys need God's miraculous touch!

Thank you so much!

Beth, Tim and Max

April 29, 2008

Two Extra Days in the Oven!

Max will be holding off for an extra two days before he makes his grand entrance into the world. Our scheduled c-section has been moved to Monday, May 5 (the time is TBD) so that all of the doctors and specialists will already be on hand throughout the week just in case we may need them. I am expecting a visit from Max's urologist, neonatalogist, and the fetal surgeon sometime this week. They will be discussing the tests and procedures that they plan to perform on Max. Once I get this information I will update the blog so that everyone knows what the plan is.

Thanks everyone!


April 24, 2008

Max's MRI Results

Hello Everyone!

I am very happy to announce that we FINALLY have a gameplan! We had our MRI yesterday morning and got our results back today. I will warn you that there is a TON of information that may not make sense, but I will try to explain as I go. So here it is:

  • Max's lungs are just above the 5th percentile. They are below average but the doctors' seem to be optomistic about them. They feel that they should be able to support him once he is born. (YEAH!) There is a little fluid around his lungs, but not enough to be sending up a red flag.
  • As for Max's kidneys, the left one seems to be close to normal size and the right one is small. The tissue around the right kidney is very thin (1/3 the size of the left one). This is called renal dysplasia. Both kidneys are showing cysts which is a sign of damage, but we don't know how much.
  • As for whether the surgery was successful: The answer is yes. The pressure on the bladder is no longer present and the kidneys have been decompressed.
  • Our main concerns: kidney function. The doctor is a little concerned on why the fluid levels didn't restore to a seminormal level.

Our hope is that his kidneys will function at least long enough to get him to a couple years old, then if we need to we will do a transplant.

The doctor is VERY happy with his growth (4 pounds 6 ounces as of today) and his heart monitoring. "He sounds beautiful" is what we keep hearing! I came off of the IV fluids today because they don't feel it was doing enough to keep me on them.

The scariest information that I heard was that we are still at a risk of a stillbirth. The low fluid levels are dangerous, but since he is still sounding good on the monitor they want to keep him in for a bit longer, but he is being watched closely! With that said, next Friday, May 2nd looks like it's going to be Max's birthday! I will be exactly 34 weeks and the doctor thinks it will be a good time to get him out for the risk of cord compression. He is still going to talk to Max's urologist and the doctor that performed the surgery to see if they have any reason for wanting him to stay in for longer, but he feels 34 weeks is going to be the day.

After Max is born, he will be stabalized here at Good Sam, but will then be transferred to Children's PICU that same day. Once he is there his urologist and the surgeon will become his primary physicians. They will also start doing some tests to determine kidney function.

Phew! That was a lot of information. If you click on the title of this post it will take you to some information that we may be faced with in regards to his kidneys.

Alright, I think that is all of the news that I have for right now. I will let you all know if there are any changes or new updates. Thank you all for all of your thoughts and prayers. We are truly blessed to have our family, friends and people that we don't even know on our side praying for Max! He is a very lucky little boy. I don't even know where to start when it comes to expressing our gratitude for what all of you have done for us! Just know that we appreciate each and everyone of you.

April 21, 2008

This Weeks Appointments

Fluid Check Ultrasound- 2.1cm

Wednesday- HUGE Day!!!!
MRI at 8am to check Max's lung volume. This will determine if his lungs are big enough to support him when he is born.
We need all the prayers we can get for today!

Growth Ultrasound and Fluid Check

My best friend, Allie Baker, gets married to Rick Neltner today!!! Congratulations you two, I love you and have a great time in Mexico!
Max at our 30 Week and 5 Day Ultrasound
His hands are right underneath of his chin

For those that haven't seen me in awhile,
this was taken after my baby shower at 31 weeks 2 days

April 15, 2008

What a crazy week!!!

Hello Everyone!

Things are starting to get a little hectic here at the hospital. We had an ultrasound last Wednesday and Max is measuring at 4 pounds 1 ounce, but his fluid levels dropped from 4.4cm to 1.5cm. The decrease could be caused by a combination of 1 or 2 things: his kidneys and/or my placenta not functioning 100% because of the surgery. We also had our weekly fluid check yesterday (Monday) and his levels decreased again from 1.5cm to 1.2cm. After being told by two of my doctors that they don't think the IV is doing anything I asked if I could have it taken out. Well, I did get a break for 12 hours, but was told that they were going to restart it and add a fluid called Hetastarch. This fluid is "suppose" to increase my fluid volume which they are hoping will help him out. I think I am having another fluid check on Thursday, so we'll see if it's working.

My MRI got moved up to next Wednesday the 23rd (it was on May 6). They are going to measure his lung volume and see how big he is. From here, they will determine what the next step is. It sounds like there is a pretty good possibility that Max may be delivered via c-section either late next week or over the weekend. I will be 33 weeks next Friday.

Tim and I are hanging in there, but are very nervous for 2 reasons:

1. It is still pretty early for him to be born and we are afraid of what is going to happen once
he is here
2. It is starting to sink in that we are going to be a mommy and a daddy VERY soon

So, needless to say, we need you to continue praying for this little boy. Our main concern right now are his lungs and his kidneys and how much function there is. Max has surprised us with how much he has overcome in the past 11 weeks and we are keeping our faith that God will continue to stand by him and help him continue with his strength and ability to fight. I will let everyone know what the MRI shows and when he may be entering this world.

Love always,

Beth, Tim and Max

April 7, 2008

We've made it to 30 weeks!!!!!

Greetings from Good Sam!!!

It seems hard to believe that it has been 11 weeks since we found out about Max's complications, 8 weeks this Wednesday since the surgery and one week today since I was admitted amongst the walls of the best hospital in the area. Honestly, the time has gone pretty quickly! It has been a long, hard road for us, but we are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel and it is looking pretty good in my opinion. On that note, I have some very encouraging updates on our little Max!

Just to recap, last Monday I was admitted for low fluid levels measuring at only 1.3cm. I went for another ultrasound on Tuesday and had a rather big jump to 3.6cm of fluid. Well, I am VERY excited to tell you that I had another ultrasound this morning and we are up to 4.4cm of fluid!!!!! The doctor that admitted me didn't think the IV would "theoretically" work, but it is! There are also no signs of me leaking fluid or having contractions. Hopefully it will stay this way and Max will decide that he likes his bigger swimming pool and will stay put until at least May.

As far as his current lung development, I have had the two steriod injections (OUCH!) to give them a boost, just in case. They have me scheduled for another fetal MRI at 32 weeks to check his lung volume. I asked the doctor this morning if the low fluids (1.3) that we had was enough to help his lungs and he said that any amount of fluid that he could have swallowed would have helped. This was a huge sigh of relief for me, because his lungs are my biggest worry at this point.

I truely feel that all of the good news that I have to share for everyone today is because of all the thoughts and prayers that you have provided us. I know that I keep repeating myself, but Tim and I are very blessed to have each and everyone of you in our lives. We also appreciate you informing everyone that you know about our situation. It is amazing to me how concerned and generous people that don't even know us are. Prayer is a very powerful thing and we feel that ours are being answered thanks to you and all that you know! We will never be able to repay you for all that you have done for us over the past 11 weeks, but thank you from the bottom of our hearts!