Friday, May 24, 2013

Feeding Woes

Hard to believe it has been two months since I was told that Kerstin would have a feeding tube placed, to safely feed her and to aid in weight gain.  We have not had a weight check since it's been in place, but it is obvious she is finally gaining weight. Even after the ups and downs we've faced since she's been using the tube.

Since having the tube placed and we started her daily boluses of 1 full can of Pediasure 1.5 cal with Fiber four times daily with a 40 mL flush of water.  We still had the constant chewing, smacking her lips and dry heaving which sometimes lead to her actually vomiting.  Kerstin started to vomit so much, I took her to her pediatrician's office to make sure she didn't have a virus or cold. That weekend she was put on Pedialyte for the entire weekend.  We were in constant contact with her doctors and nutritionist at Children's about these issues either via calls or emails and even videos.  These concerns prompted her neurologist to order that she have an hour long EEG done to see if she was having seizures.  This meant another trip of 124 miles one way to get the test done.  This trip has been made 7 times in the past 2 1/2 months, with orthopedic appointments and surgery, casts changing, then cast removal, to neuro appointments and eventually another hospital stay and another surgery.

Got the EEG and  the tech told me that she did the chewing/smacking routine during the test.  A few days later, results showed that she was NOT having seizures during the study.  Thankful for that, but what is going on, causing her to do this?  Nutritionist decided and consulted with her doctor and nurse about a formula change.  Her Pedisure was changed to Pediasure Peptide 1.5 cal, same feeding schedule.  Still not working  sadly. Now, nutritionist suggests that her feeding changes altogether! Really?  How so?

Kerstin will need to have smaller boluses through the day, 10:30 am: 120 mL of Pediasure Peptide along with 40 mL water; the same at 1:30 pm, 4:30 pm and 7:30 pm; she will also get an overnight feed using a Kangaroo Joey feeding pump, to run 10 hours overnight, that would start at 9 pm in order for her to be off the pump around 7 am to get ready for school.  The first night of use, my princess looked frightened at the sight of the pole and pump.  We had to explain to her that she would not be stuck, and that it was not an IV.  Told her that she would have her Pediasure going "down down into her tummy tummy.." ( our little sing song, while she's receiving her boluses ).

 The new schedule did not work very long,  the second night/morning, Kerstin started to vomit while the feed was still going.  I'm so thankful that we have been blessed to have great people in our lives and a sister who is also a nurse.  She told me to check with them again because with her having a bolus at 7:30 pm and going on her pump at 9 was possibly too much on/in her stomach.  The 7:30 bolus was dropped and things have been going more smoothly.  Granted, she is still doing the chewing/smacking, not as often.  It is my prayer that these instances will cease altogether.

We finally got a schedule to wean completely off of the Topamax.  I guess her neurologist wanted to see the results of the EEG before deciding to stop that seizure medicine.

We are on a journey!  We are fighters and don't give up easily.  The Lord is blessing us, Thankful for it.

More to come...


  1. Aloha my friend, I join you in your prayers! When 2 or more comes together in agreement, the Lord hears us even more. I'm asking our church to pray over you both and our family lifts you both up in healing prayers, to make Kerstin comfortable and completely healed! May God's love, hope and faith guide you all.

    You are beautiful inside & out Mattisa and Kerstin is a super amazing little girl. Keep pushing on strong and know that prayers are being lifted! xoxo

    1. Prayers are what keeps us going strong! Thank you so much, as always. It means so much! xoxo