We are now the proud parents of a newborn baby girl, Namine Olivia Eiche. She was born at 10:13 AM on Tuesday, July 15, 2008. She weighed in at 4 pounds, 10 ounces, and she was 13 inches long. She was delivered by C-section. Namine has been admitted to the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) in Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin for all her problems:
Namine’s jaw is too small, and is too far back. As a result of this, her airway is blocked. For the time being, there is a tube in her nose, pushed down her throat to keep her airway propped open. There is oxygen being put down the tube, but she is breathing on her own. There will eventually be reconstructive surgery (called a jaw distraction) to pull her jaw forward. In addition to this, she has a cleft palate. Contrary to usual cleft palates, however, where the lip and gums are usually also split, her palate is open near the back of her mouth. The doctors say that when they distract Namine’s jaw, they will also close her palate.
Her heart has double inlet left ventricle heart defect, which means that instead of having two chambers in her heart, she only has one – the left ventricle. (If a child has only one heart chamber, doctors prefer it be the left, which is stronger.) She has heart surgery planned for Tuesday, but we don’t know exactly what will be done yet – that will be decided on Monday. They will also probably put the air tube all the way down her throat for this surgery.
She has caudal regression. Her sacrum is deformed, which in turn has affected her thighs. They are shorter than they should be, and they do not have the ball-in-socket joints to her hips that a normal baby would have. She also has clubbed feet. At this point in time, we’re not sure what kind of surgery she’ll undergo for all this. Her airway and heart take first priority.
I just want to say thanks for everyone’s continued prayer and support. We can’t articulate how much it means to us. Lastly, I’d like to mention that I’ve created an online photo album for Namine, the slide show for which is on the right sidebar. I’ll also upload some videos when I get the chance.