I promised to tell about the cool new bottle we got in the recovery room after Mallorie's surgery. It's put out by a company called Zip-N-Squeeze, and is called a Soft Sipp bottle. It is AMAZING.
Of course, it was created by a nurse. :)
It has a one-way valve, so you can control the rate in which you give liquids, and has a really, really soft and flexible tubing that doesn't even hurt the mouth to use after surgery. I wish we had known about this bottle sooner.
Mallorie had been unexpectedly hospitalized for almost a month in February, after she had a mouth surgery. Although she had not been fabulous about taking bottles before then, she got so she would not even take the occasional bottle, ever. She had developed some gagging and vomiting issues, partly due (I think) to some formulas we had been trying, and I think partly also because of the time she spent with a tube in her throat while she was on the vent. She eventually became upset about anything being in or near her mouth, including a bottle nipple, and would gag and vomit in response. She would only take sips of water or Pedialyte drizzled into her mouth by syringe.
Except for that bottle she took on Saturday, it had been several months, I think, since any of us have been successful in getting her to even take a sip except by syringe, so we carry syringes everywhere. The problem with syringes is that they are either so small that you are refilling them every few minutes ... a 10cc syringe is just 2 teaspoons ... or you look goofy squirting a 60cc (2 oz) syringe in your kid's mouth in public. It looks like a horse syringe!
But with this new squirt bottle, you can feed liquids in a controlled fashion, and because the tubing is so thin and soft, even Mallorie, with the oral aversion she'd developed, took to it easily. And no sucking is required, so it's great for kids who haven't developed a good suck, but who still can manage to swallow liquids without aspirating. It holds 3 oz (about 90 cc).
Of course, if she ever decides she likes her regular bottles again, we may outgrow our need for her ZNS bottle!
In October 2006, we went for an ultrasound for our fifth child, and were told that our daughter probably had a chromosomal defect. We were urged to get an amniocentesis so that genetic testing could be done, “so the doctors will know what decisions to make.” The specialist told us that he suspected Trisomy 13 or 18, and if he was correct, then no OB would do a c-section because it wouldn’t make a difference for the end outcome. Besides, no surgeon would operate on her back (she had a meningocele – spina bifida), because “Trisomy 18 and 13 are what are called lethal conditions. They are incompatible with life.”
That’s how our story with her began, but it is most certainly not the end. As her amazing pediatrician said about examining her at birth, “I looked into her eyes, and she looked back at me and said, I’m here for the long haul, chick.”