September 27, 2012

NICU update...swallow study

Olivia had a great day and we have HUGE praises!  The swallow study went perfectly and Olivia cooperated enough for the speech therapist and doctor to get a good idea of what is and what isn't going on when she is eating.  The swallow study showed NO signs of aspiration and NO signs of severe reflux! PRAISE THE LORD! Because there were no signs of serious issues, Olivia is now taking milk without any thickener to see how she tolerates it through the weekend.  Her swallowing reflex is still a little slower than normal but the speech therapist believes this will get better as she drinks more from the bottle and "exercises" those muscles more often.  She has done great so far (drinking 2 entire bottles this afternoon!) and we couldn't be more excited about this progress!  I finally feel like we are moving forward to bringing her home soon!

Olivia had to be transported once again to another hospital for the swallow study.  But this time, we got to join her.  Jason and I actually sat in on the swallow study and it was one of the neatest things we have seen.  We got to watch how her insides respond to liquid and exactly what her body does during feedings.  And because we got to watch all of that I feel like I have a better understanding of how we can help her be more successful at eating.

She sleeps SO soundly in the transport box....even in the bright lights of the hospital.
And the nurse removed her feeding tube during the swallow study so it wouldn't disrupt what the doctor was trying to see and they left it out for awhile until she woke up again.  I took advantage of it and got some sweet pictures of her precious little cheeks and face without any tubes. :)
We are praising the Lord tonight for this big answer to prayer!  Though feedings are still not going to be super easier, we all have a better understanding of how to make this a successful and positive experience for Olivia and hopefully less stressful on us while feeding her.  We are continuing to pray that each feeding will get easier for her and that she will take every feeding by bottle in the coming days.
Thank you for taking the time to say a prayer for Olivia today.  God is definitely answering prayers! :)

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