Ava's Road to Recovery: a Honey Badger's Fight
Organized by: Chris Loschiavo
Below is Baby Ava's story, as told by her mother:
Little Miss Ava Gail was born prematurely at 36 weeks. We thought we had time to travel to TN for Christmas as her due date was not until Jan 12, 2016. But Ava had other plans... We arrived in St. Joseph, TN from Fort Bragg, NC early in the morning on the 20th of December and at 0059 on the 21st, my beautiful baby girl was born!
We stayed in the hospital for the obligatory 48 hours with nothing more than some phototherapy. With her being a preemie at 36 weeks, it was not surprising that she would be a little jaundice. We were discharged from the hospital the afternoon of the 23rd. We were able to spend Christmas with family
But, on Christmas evening, I caught her turning blue. She had stopped breathing. She did it twice more that evening. I sat next to her crib all night that night and watched her. She stopped breathing four more times and I had to vigorously rouse her each time to begin breathing again. The next morning, before noon, she had three more episodes. Aaron, my husband, said enough was enough!
We rushed her to the ER. We called ahead and they were awaiting our arrival and admitted her immediately. By this time, she's barely 5 days old. The doctors at the hospital run what tests they can, and she showed negative for everything. She continued to have apnea spells over and over.
Finally, on the morning of the 29th, the doctor said she didn't know what else to do and called the PICU in Huntsville. Ava had 5 spells back to back in front of her within 30 minutes and her heart began to slow down. It was as if her body was too tired to continue.
After arriving to the PICU in Huntsville, many of the same tests were run with different results. They did a full viral and bacterial infection panel and she popped positive for H-influenza, which is also known as bacterial influenza. This can be very aggressive and fatal if not caught and treated early enough. It also can lead to bacterial meningitis. We did a chest X-ray to confirm and it was obvious in both lungs. We began antibiotics immediately. Last night (30 December), she had apnea spells again.... The new doc that came on today believes there is something underlying other than the infection. He has sent her for a brain MRI. We are awaiting results currently.