A Journey from 650grams to 1 Kg

Jaipur,7 March 2018: A lady, resident of Shriganga nagar came to the hospital with 27 weeks’ pregnancy was admitted as she had some serious co – morbidities. She had high blood pressure and was diagnosed to have kidney disease with a risk of going onto lifelong dialysis. She was advised abortion, as the current pregnancy was worsening her situation, risk of irreparable kidney damage and lifelong dialysis, also the blood supply to the baby too was not enough leading to intra uterine growth retardation and high risk of neonatal morbidity or mortality. This was her second pregnancy and in her first pregnancy too she had required dialysis.Teaching us the meaning of the word mother, this lady however pulled on for as long as she could, but as fate would have it a little angel just 650 grams in weight and about palm size in length was born on 22nd January, 2018 at 27 weeks preterm with intra uterine growth retardation.

Her lungs were so immature that a special medicine called surfactant and ventilator support was needed to help them mature. Her BP was maintained with medications like Dobutamine to help her little heart pump better. She was at risk of infections hence needed antibiotics and utmost hand hygiene. An incubator kept her and her surrounding atmosphere warm mimicking a womb to help her grow as if intra uterine. Her skin, so fragile that even the presence of a skin probe would cause it to peel. NICU nursing staff handled her with utmost gentleness. Umbilical lines were put to save her the pain of recurrent pricks.

She was started oro-gastric tube feedings, just a ml initially and gradually increased as she began tolerating it. The intestines being immature too did not allow too rapid an increase in feeds hence ml per ml slowly the feeds were increased to full feeds and completely off Intra Venous Fluids.

Nutritional supplements were added to help her gain weight, but as she grew she became anaemic called Anaemia of Prematurity. She was transfused with blood post which she gained weight better and activity improved.

The NICU soon was filled with her little cries and demands. It was heartening to see a tiny angel gradually metamorphise into a 1 kg baby, her inaudible cries to crying that filled the NICU, a baby barely palm size now lies peacefully on her mother’s chest for Kangaroo Mother care now requiring to be held by both hands. Her heart beats regularly to the tune of her mother’s heartbeat, her quiet respiration mimicking her mother’s breathing, her soft supple skin intact without a scratch and all her blood cultures sterile. She bids adieu to us ready to be transferred to a hospital near her home for weight gain and care, inspiring us never to give up and to fight as bravely as her against all odds because Life is but a chance to become better.