Saturday, August 09, 2008

Meningitis

Nora has been officially diagnosed with meningitis.

Here are what I consider the salient points.

Meningitis is an inflammation of the meninges, the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord. It is usually caused by bacteria or viruses, but it can also be caused by certain medications or illnesses.

Bacterial meningitis is rare, but is usually serious and can be life-threatening if it's not treated right away.

Many different types of bacteria can cause bacterial meningitis. In newborns, the most common causes are Group B streptococcus, Escherichia coli, and Listeria monocytogenes.

Some patients who have had meningitis may require longer follow-up. One of the most common problems resulting from bacterial meningitis is impaired hearing, and kids who've had bacterial meningitis should have a hearing test following their recovery.

The complications of bacterial meningitis can be severe and include neurological problems such as hearing loss, visual impairment, seizures, and learning disabilities. The heart, kidneys, and adrenal glands also may be affected. Although some kids develop long-lasting neurological problems, most who receive prompt diagnosis and treatment recover fully.
Ms. N's second infection is Group Strep B again. An EKG showed a casing (or casting?) from a prior pic line and the thought now is that the bacteria hung out on that from the first round and started growing again after the antibiotics were stopped and out of her system the last time. And, when it came back, it came back strong. She is on three different big hitter IV antibiotics and treatment is expected to be at least 4 - 6 weeks.

In spite of the MRI and several attempts at putting in another pic line (none of which were successful), N looked like she was doing well last night with good stats and blood gas levels so maybe she will come off the respirator today. Since they can't get a pic line in and her small veins are just shot from all the big hitter antibiotics, I think she is going to need to have a central line put in surgically so they may wait until after that to take her off.

Today is another day. My morning breastfeeding attempt with Mr. R wasn't a complete disaster for a change since we got home and he actually latched and suckled for a bit and got into a good rythme which his older brother ruined by needing help on the computer and then insisting that R shouldn't get Momma's Milk it was his and it was okay if R just pretended to drink it. At which point, I sent him off to see if CC and Aunt T were awake. Yes, a tad evil of me, but my cousin did say it was okay since here days here are numbered and it would help get her back on east coast time.

7 comments:

Jen said...

If it makes you feel ANY better at all...my sister also had meningitis when she was a newborn and is now expecting her first baby. She never had any problems in school and was able to read a chapter book prior to kindergarten. I know that things now seem dim but we are all praying for you and your little miracles.

Anonymous said...

Sending lots of love and saying plenty of prayers here. N sounds like a real fighter. One of my friend's daughters had a line put in and it made things much easier for her when she needed to take meds.

Ali said...

Sending positive thoughts your way, praying for N and all of you. She does sound like a fighter (gets it from her mom from what I've read).

Miss X said...

I'll continue to pray. Your precious N is a fighter.

Katrina said...

I am glad that at least now there is a diagnosis. I know that N will fight because she wants to get home and be with you just as much as you want her there. :) Keeping you all in prayer.

Aimee said...

She's definitely in good hands and a true fighter. Hoping she bounces back like usual and makes a quick recovery. I'm going to say an xtra prayer for your precious N.

Laura in L.A. said...

I am so sorry to hear this, but at least we have a diagnosis. I am praying that Nora heals quickly and fully, and is home with you as soon as possible.

Love, Laura

P.S. I know you have enough on your plate right now, but how is baby Jason?