Riley's Comforting Embrace: Megan's NICU Story
Welcoming Our Baby
My wife, Tracy, and I were thrilled to welcome our first child in August 2011. At 37 weeks’ gestation, Tracy had a C-Section and deliver little Megan. Hearing her cry was amazing and, like all parents, we could not wait to hold her.
But after a couple of minutes, additional medical staff arrived in the room and I could sense something was wrong.
Our Riley Story Begins
After pulse oxygen readings, x-rays, and an ECHO, it was discovered Megan had a heart defect called Transposition of the Great Arteries.
A transport team arrived and took my daughter to Riley Hospital for Children a couple of hours after her birth.
Ups and Downs
Before I even arrived at Riley, Megan had a hole created in her heart to allow oxygenated blood to mix within her heart chambers. I quickly realized Megan was not at an ordinary hospital. The support I received and the information provided by Megan’s NICU nurse made me feel comforted in a totally uncomfortable situation. Once Tracy arrived the next day, the nursing staff embraced her with love and gave her the tools she needed to help care for little Megan as well as herself.
Tracy and I met Riley heart surgeon Dr. Mark Rodefeld as he explained the “switch” surgery Megan would have. Even though things did not go exactly as planned, Dr. Rodefeld went through the ups and downs with us. Megan needed to go on ECMO (infant heart-lung bypass) for five days and also had a couple of surgeries for bleeding complications. But finally, after a week, Megan had her chest closed and it was time to heal.
After spending three more weeks in PICU (pediatric intensive care unit), we were able to celebrate when Megan came off the breathing tube, sucked on a pacifier, ate a bit from a bottle, and, most importantly, was able to be held. My daughter was finally released after five and a half weeks at Riley. We were thrilled to finally bring our baby home but sad to leave our Riley family behind. Fortunately, we have stayed in touch with several people at Riley and love sharing updates on Megan’s progress.
Megan Today: Our Miracle Baby
Megan is now 3 years old with twin brothers who are 20 months old. She loves being chased by her brothers and tickling them. She also enjoys her weekly gymnastics class.
My daughter proved she was very strong in her first weeks of life. Now, that strong personality keeps us happily busy.
Megan is truly our miracle baby.
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