Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Knowledge Pays Off

Today I woke up and set off to my Alma Mater to use their research publication access privileges.  I'd gone through all of the pertinent abstracts last night, but needed to dig deeper.  I jumped headfirst into all of the literature pertaining to postnatal steroids and started from the beginning.  I examined all of the most pertinent papers in the field, printed them, and ranked them in a binder for when your mother and I talked to the doctors.  I'm glad that I did.  The current consensus in the literature to date is that the use of postnatal steroids should be used only in the severest cases of respiratory distress, but it turns out that the doctor on duty last night was very hawkish about using steroids.  Too hawkish.  The one that we met with today had a very different perspective, and it confirmed my suspicions.  Apparently, now that you are at full feeds, you have a much better chance of growing out of your respiratory issues without resorting to drugs that might fry your brain.  If that's the case, then that's fine by me.        


  1. Good job Dana!

    After reading "Deciding which part...." it was a great relief to read "Knowledge Pays Off". Scary too.

    My continuing prayers and best wishes for everyone.


  2. Thanks Linda! It sounds kind of silly, but it was a good feeling to, you know, be useful. l think Ellie has had some time put back on her clock, again.

  3. I'm glad you decided to do your own research, Dana. From my experience with doctors I've always been most successful working in conjunction with them, which means I often end up thoroughly researching the subject and learn a lot more about the subject than they do sometimes. Not to discredit doctors, but they are only human and don't know everything. It should be everyone's responsibility to research their condition in order to make the right decision, and only you know what is truly right for you or your baby.

  4. Good for you!! You both are doing a fantastic job!! I wholeheartedly agree with you doing research & not taking (any) doctor information/suggestions lightly!! & I concur with Andrea ^!! :)

  5. Yeah, the thing is that doctors in here can prioritize things very differently. The doctor we had yesterday, who was very forthcoming about information as opposed to some of the others, said that he prioritized staving off morbidity. "Your daughter probably won't be competing in the Olympics, anyway, so her lungs can take a hit. But she will need to pay her bills, get a job, etc." A very sober perspective, and I appreciated it.

    The doctor who had recommended steroids so early was resentful of the fact that we were going to go do our own research. Honestly, when I started, I was kind of expecting to have her opinion confirmed, but it wasn't after all. The contemporary consensus by experts in the field is to only use Dexamethasone in low doses when it is absolutely necessary for infants that are maxed out on respiratory support. Ellie isn't anywhere close to maxed out on respiratory support.