In an attempt to keep everyone updated as to "the life of times of Tyler and Parker" I thought I'd take a stab at trying to create an ongoing blog. Trying to call everyone has just not been a reality.....and knowing how things can get lost in translation from one person to the next.....well here goes......
On Monday June 16 Heather and I went in for a routine doc appointment. At that appointment Heather had swollen feet, protien in her urine and elevated blood pressure. These are the three signs of Preeclampsia (my best understanding is that preclemsia is the pre-cursor to Eclampsia which is a condition where the mother's body views the baby(s) as a foreign body and tries to reject it(them) as foreign tissue. If it goes to eclampsia the mother can go into seizures which would deprive the babies of oxygen and possibly kill them. She could encounter a stroke which could obviously kill her. Nasty condition to say the least!!!) Given the fact that she had all three signs the doctor sent us over to Mercy Folsom for observation. After five hours of rest and monitoring Heather's blood pressure decreased to the point that the doc sent us home for bed rest with a follow up appointment on thursday June 19th.
On Thursday June 19 Heather and I returned for a follow up appointment feeling really good about her rest at home and off work. NOT!!! Her blood pressure was back up and higher than before, still had swollen feet protien in her urine. After some discussion between the docs it was decided she would return to Mercy Folsom for a 24 hour observation period. After six hours at Mercy Folsom her blood pressure had not decreased at all. More discussion with the doctors brought about her transfer to UC Davis Med Center, where they have a full Neo-Natal Intensive Care Facility. After a fun 90 mph ambulance ride (no sirens) down Hwy 50 (with me right behind her in the Honda CRV!!!!), she was admitted to UCD. Spirits were still jovial and optomistic......that would soon change. At around midnight her blood pressure peaked at 187 / 119 which prompted the docs to start her on two medications. One is a blood pressure med and the other is Magnesium Sulfate which helps decrease eclemsia side effects and protects her internal organs. As evidenced by Heather's impersonation of Linda Blair, we soon found out that Magnesium Sulfate (to be refered to from here on out as Mags...sorry Maggie:)) is really some nasty stuff. Within ten minutes of getting the IV of mags Heather broke out ina sweat, became disoriented and proceeded to projectile vomitt across the room. (This, ironically enough, prompted the doctor to leave the room for the nurses to clean up). Another side effect of mags is fluid retention......to the point of the recipient possibly getting pneumonia. Thus Heather's fluid intake was drastically decreased and regulated. Thus she became dehydrated. The mags and the dehydration caused her to get a massive headache that could only be treated with ice on her head. Needless to say she was miserable. To top it all off, they had to connect fetal heart rate monitors X 2 to her belly. Keeping both Tyler and Parker's heart rates dialed in proved to be the bane of our nurses existance. They battled with it all night as did Heather since she couldn't move which just made her even more miserable. At this point the doctors began explaining to us that we would be in the hospital until the babies were born.........which could happen in a day or could be as long as three weeks........THREE WEEKS.......this was their optomistic point of view.......that only makes Tyler and Parker 29 weeks at best........now we began to grasp the gravity of the situation. Needless to say Thursday night and most of Friday was tough. The good news, yes there was some good news, came late Friday. Because Heather had reacted so well to the meds and her blood pressure had come down significantly ( 140's / 80's) the docs took her off the mags. This allowed Heather to rehydrate. This in conjunction with the mags leaving her system helped to decrease her headache. By late Friday night her headache was bearable. However, the constant monitoring of the babies still left her unable to lie any other way but directly on her back. This left her extremely unfomfortable, unable to re-position and thus continued to prevent her from getting any real sleep.
Saturday June 21 Oh what a difference a day makes!!!! The roller coaster ride continued with the news Sat morning that Heather's continual good response to the blood pressure meds would allow the nurses to take off the babies heart monitors and proceed to check them a few times a day rather than continually. Heather was free to roll onto her side and rest!!! We met with the NICU specialist and asked a thousand questions about having to deliver this early. Too much information to detail or even summarize so here's the bottom line......delivery this early has a 50% survival rate with a 75% chance of mild to severe neurological damage. Bottom line is they need to bake longer. At 28 weeks things get much better......no percentages yet. So our goal becomes July 3rd. The other piece of good news (that turns out is short lived) is that the main doc is so happy with Heather's blood pressure that she talks with us about the small possibility that she may send Heather home for bed rest. She wants to wait three more days, but this is the first time anyone has felt comfortable saying anthing other than we were here for the duration. Now I qualified this info as short lived because Heather's blood pressure slowly began to go back up over the course of Saturday afternoon. Roller coaster goes up, roller coaster goes down!!! Later saturday night and early sunday morning the trend reversed itself again as her pressure trended back down again. Meanwhile her protien in her urine has remained present, but consistantly at a somewhat low rate. All of her blood work keeps coming back positive as well. Trace signs of problems, but slight. Which brings us to today. I've decided to be overly protective and basically screen all her calls, keep the room dimly lit and decline all visitors in an attempt to just keep her stable. Zana was a trooper and sat with Heather Sat afternoon which helped out tremendously. Today has seen Heather pressure holding steady in a good range, but has also seen a small dip on the roller coaster. The new concern is that Parker isn't really being as active as they'd like. They are bringing in another ultra-sound to get a better look at him to make sure all is well. All signs from the boys has been very positive so far, so we're not really worried much at this point. We are scheduled to go up to the NICU today and take an extensive tour so we don't get freaked out by all the machinery when we do deliver. We'll also have another consult to ask a ton more questions. At this point I will try and post a couple of times a day to keep everyone updated. Thank you all so much for all of your concern and patience as the info has been scattered at best. Hopefully this will solve that problem. Being completely blog ignorant, I don't know if you can write back to us but if you can we'd love to hear from you. We are living in a bubble and are losing track of the real world and would love to hear how things are going with all of you!!!! thanks again and keep those fingers crossed and prayers coming!!!!
John Heather Tyler and Parker