Baby Luke is now 12 days old and has continued to lose weight. He was 8,14 at birth, then went down to 8,6 and 8,3...now today he was 7,5. He hasn't pooped in five days and is not having as many wet diapers as he should. I have been really focusing on the nursing the last few days to try to make sure he's getting enough milk. I've been nursing him as often as he wants and also making sure my diet is robust . I'm also drinking a couple of cups of fenugreek lactation tea daily.
The problem seems to be that his strength has waned to the point where he just can't get the milk he needs, so our midwife came today and we're starting an aggressive plan to get things going in the right direction. His body temp dipped down into the 96's this morning so we have cranked the heat up and are keeping him well bundled with his hat on. When she left it was up to 98 so that was great that he was able to respond well and quickly.
The really good news is that we were able to pump 2 oz out of each breast after he nursed (we also did a before/after weight check and he had only gotten a couple tenths of an ounce of milk) and then DH got 2 oz of the pumped milk in him with a bottle and now he's taking a great nap. Our plan is to nurse and then bottle feed while pumping, every 2 hours for the next few days or until his weight has really rebounded. I have to say I shed a few tears during our initial conversation with our midwife today as she was using words like serious, critical, imperative. And then before we tried pumping she also laid out formula supplementation as a possibility which is my worst nightmare, esp with the food intolerance issues my other kids have had. The midwife feels like once he's getting the calories in his belly his energy will rapidly start to improve and his nursing will become more productive, so she sees this as a very short term thing but something we need to take very seriously. So fortunately I have enough of an assortment of pumping supplies and bottles around here that DH just needs to sterilize and then we're pretty much set. She left her electric pump with me to use and she also left her baby scale which we'll use to weigh him after 24 hours. She says he needs to have gained a half ounce at the minimum or we will have to take him in to the Dr. but she feels like he will respond well to this and we'll see more than a half ounce gain.
So prayers, etc would be greatly appreciated. I am worried about this little guy. I feel like he just needs to get stronger and things will fall into place...am just hoping that it's not a more serious underlying problem. She poked his heel to gather blood for the newborn screen which we had previously declined. It identifies metabolic disorders and thyroid issues, where babies can't process their food so she thought it would be good to be on the safe side and test for those things. :( I try to just focus on the positive, especially that my body is making enough milk for him. if we have the supply at hand then it's really just a matter of getting it IN him until he is strong enough to do it himself. I try not to let my mind wander over to worrying that it might be something bigger.
As an aside we think the main reason he's had so much trouble getting enough milk is that I have really big nipples, and latching has been tricky. That will be an issue until he is stronger and his mouth is a little bigger! My nipples weren't this big last time around so clearly the last three years of nursing had an effect on them. :)
I know issues like this are really common, I just am really shocked that it's happening to me as I nursed my other two children for 3 years each and never had any issues beyond the run of the mill latching adjustments and sore nipples. I even tandem nursed for 9 months. They were both big babies that got so nice and fat from my milk, I was always proud of what a good job my body did nourishing them.
Edited by Gracecody - 10/8/11 at 2:02pm