So as you know, Joel was weined off the ventilator this week, and transitioned to a CPAP machine. This was a HUGE accomplishment! It looks a lot like scuba gear, and Joel pretty much hates it. The plan was to have him start with doing 1-hour cannula trials (I posted a picture of him with the nasal cannula this week) and then increase trial times from there. He did well on the first two days, but since then he's been having troubles tolerating even breathing on the CPAP.
One of the possible "causes" of the respiratory problems could be that they restarted him on his methadone/ativan wein. Joel was on pretty heavy narcotics for a month, and again for short periods of time for each procedure. Methadone is a medication they use to help with the withdrawls from his pain medication, fentanyl. Ativan is used to help wein him off versed, his sedation medication, but also used in conjunction to help prevent seizures, which he has had from the brain bleeding. Breakthrough withdrawls have been pretty tough for him. They adjusted his dose accordingly this morning, and his oxygen saturation levels and respiratory rate have improved. We are hoping that they continue to improve throughout the night and tomorrow so he can restart his trials. This would be a great prayer topic... :)
Joel also got immunized this week, and weighed in at 7 lbs, 8 oz!
In the next couple of days, speech therapy will be conducting a swallow study to see if he will be able to take food orally. He can suck on a binky, which is a good sign, but it has to do with being able to suck, swallow, breathe, and not aspirate his food. I'll give you guys more updates as I get them. Thanks for reading, and for the prayers!!! XO