Morgan had a good weekend. He is maintaining on his respiratory settings. He is continuing to tolerate the breast milk feedings. He has had a couple of residuals of 5cc’s. But, he has been back on breast milk since Friday and at 8 feedings a day, 2 residuals over 3 days is not bad.

I get to hold him every visit now, I try to time it while he is eating. Don says I should so he associates me with food. Another good reason is that when I hold him he doesn’t have to expend any energy to keep warm, so he’™ll gain weight faster.

His weight last night was 3lbs 8ozs. Not sure how accurate that was, so we’™ll wait for tonight’s weight to confirm it.

We were just told that Morgan had a repeat Head Ultrasound on the 24th, re-checking for brain bleeds. This one showed a Grade 1 bleed. This is the mildest level of bleed and usually will resolve itself without long term damage. We will have another ultrasound on the 31st, to further access things.

Here’s the scoop on what we are looking at:

Intraventricular Hemorrhage

What is intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH)?

Intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH) is bleeding inside or around the ventricles, the spaces in the brain containing the cerebral spinal fluid.

* “intraventricular” means within the ventricles
* “hemorrhage” means excessive bleeding

Intraventricular hemorrhage is most common in premature babies, especially very low birthweight babies weighing less than 1,500 grams (3 pounds, 5 ounces).

What causes intraventricular hemorrhage?

It is not clear why IVH occurs. Bleeding can occur because blood vessels in a premature baby’s brain are very fragile and immature and easily rupture. Babies with respiratory problems such as hyaline membrane disease, or other complications of prematurity, are more likely to have IVH. The smaller and more premature the baby, the more likely IVH will occur. Nearly all IVH occurs within the first three days of life.

Why is intraventricular hemorrhage a concern?

Bleeding in the brain can put pressure on the nerve cells and damage them. Severe damage to cells can lead to brain injury.

What are the different grades of intraventricular hemorrhage?

The amount of bleeding varies. IVH is often described in four grades:

* Grade 1 – bleeding occurs just in a small area of the ventricles.
* Grade 2 – bleeding also occurs inside the ventricles.
* Grade 3 – ventricles are enlarged by the blood.
* Grade 4 – bleeding into the brain tissues around the ventricles.

Grades 1 and 2 are most common, occurring in about 75 percent of babies with IVH. Often, there are no further complications. Grades 3 and 4 are the most serious and may result in long-term brain injury to the baby. Hydrocephalus (too much cerebral spinal fluid in the brain) may develop after severe IVH.

What are the symptoms of intraventricular hemorrhage?

The following are the most common symptoms of intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH). However, each baby may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:

* Apnea and bradycardia (stopping breathing and low heart rate).
* Pale or blue coloring (cyanosis).
* Weak suck.
* High-pitched cry.
* Seizures.
* Swelling or bulging of the fontanelles, the “soft spots” between the bones of the baby’s head.
* Anemia (low blood count).

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