Abby had a fabulous appointment today! We won't be going into the hospital right away to do the weaning, but she will be weaning off of the vent starting tomorrow. We'll be doing it from home slowly!
Starting tomorrow (when our equipment company comes out to change it, since we are not allowed to), Abby's breath rate on the vent will change from 14 to 12 breaths per minute. This rate will continue to go down by 2 every two weeks (or more if Abby does really well!)
The other (and more exciting, in my mind) part of the weaning is that we will be taking Abby completely off of the vent for short amounts of time 4x a day. We're supposed to start with just a minute or two (depending on what she can handle) and then work our way up until she is doing about 5 minutes this time next week. We'll talk to pulminology on a weekly basis to report on how she's doing, and they will continue to give us orders to increase the amount of time she's off.
We'll be alternating weeks with what is changed. For example, we'll change the breath rate this week, then take her off for 10 minutes next week, change the breath rate the following week, then take her off for 15 minutes the following week. That way, something is being changed every week.
Eventually, we'll go in the hospital for a few days for the final weaning--but that won't be for a while. We'll do most of the work at home, which I like! The doctor also assured me that Abby can be weaned year-round and that we don't have to worry about cold and flu season like our ENT warned. So if we don't finish this summer, there's not a time crunch.
I really like our new pulminologist and the clinical nurse that works with her. They were both with us for about an hour coming up with our "plan of attack," and I really appreciated how much time they took with us. I left there feeling very confident and excited!
Soooooo...as son as we got home and got settled, what did I do?? Well, I took Abby off of her vent, of course! :) I've got permission now!! Of course, I put her pulse oximeter on so that I could monitor how much oxygen she was getting and make sure her heart beat stayed steady. I also decided to get some toys and play with her so that she wouldn't notice she was off and get worked up. Turns out, I needn't have been worried! She was smiley and playing and did fabulously! I put her back on after 2 minutes only because I didn't want to wear her out, not because she was desatting or breathing hard. Yay Abby!
Thanks for all of your prayers and well-wishes today! I couldn't have asked for a better appointment! :)