Friday, June 19

Anxiously Waiting

So we've been anxiously waiting for the ultrasound/brain scan results since it was completed at 8 this morning and we finally spoke to the doctor and he said that the ultrasound showed that Bryce's brain bleed (aka IVH) is NOT worse!

Yea Bryce!

We knew from earlier in the week that hydrocephalus (build up of spinal fluid in the ventricles of the brain) was going to be an issue we'd have to deal with and the scan today was further proof of this. But Dr. George is a leading neonatal neurosurgeon that Dell specifically recruited and built a special building for that houses one of only 18 IMRISneuro fully integrated operating rooms in the country, IMRISneuro is a movable high field MRI that can be displayed for a surgeon as they are working....very high tech! And he's the guy that'll help us take care of Bryce's hydrocephalus. This is a common problem with micro-preemies and the procedures used to resolve it are common practice here.

There are two options to treat the hydrocephalus: a shunt which would take the fluid from his brain and pass it through a permanent tube into another part of his body, usually the stomach, for the body to reabsorb. This is only done on bigger babies though and would be a permanent fixture in Bryce's body. Many people live with these and simply have to have them checked yearly to ensure they continue to function properly. The second option is more of a temporary, wait and see option. They put in a resovoir under his scalp that will hold the fluid and then every so often they go in and remove it with a needle. It sounds awful, I know, but it's relatively common and safe. If after some time the body is able to take over the reabsorption of the spinal fluid again then he might not need to deal with this issue ever again. Like I said, the wait and see option.

The great thing about the hydrocephalus is that it is non-emergent as of right now. Where yours and my heads are fused and therefore cannot tolerated swelling, baby heads are not fused and as such are more flexible and better able to deal with mild swelling fairly reasonably. We expect to visit with Dr. George in the next few days and review our options, which likely will be the resevoir option from what I can tell.

Of course, as with all things micro-preemie there are risks we have to be cognicent of. With brain bleeds as well as with hydrocephalus the major concern is the development of Cerebral Palsy (CP) later in life. There doesn't seem to be a direct correlation between CP severity and certain issues as a baby. Some babies are full term after healthy pregnancies and develop CP, other babies are very premature and have both brain bleeds and hydrocephalus but develop no or mild CP. There is just no way to look into the future and see. We do know that the risk of developing CP is increased first with a brain bleed, then again with its severity, and yet again with the development of hydrocephalus. But that's okay with this mom and dad! We are here for Bryce no matter what happens and we will do everything within our power to give him the best fighting chance he can possibly have!

One last tid bit before I post this anxiously awaited update: Dr. Hodges, our most tell it how it is, let's not sugar coat the truth, doctor mentioned three different times during our conversation, "when Bryce goes home." This is a first for him and I personally couldn't be more happy to hear him so confident that we'll someday be taking this sweet baby home! A little scared? Heck yes! But excited none the less!!


  1. "when Bryce goes home"... what sweet words! Go Bryce!

  2. Dear Mommy,

    "Home" thats music to my ears!! Thats my goal. I will keep up the fight.

    Love Bryce

  3. I can't imgaine what would make you feel better than to hear a doctor say 'when Bryce goes home...' I am elated!!


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