Andrew and Cassie Bailes had a beautiful baby boy on November 9th, 2014. They named him Cooper Gavin Bailes. He was born 10 weeks early because an ultrasound revealed that there was no blood flow through the umbilical cord. He was born at 2 pounds, 9 ounces. He was put in the NICU in Charleston, West Virginia until he was big enough to go home. He was on a breathing machine called a CPAPP for 5 days but other than that, he just needed to gain weight so they could go home.
On December 2, at only 23 days old, Cassie went to see him and he was a lot fussier than normal. His belly was big so they ordered an X-ray. The X-ray showed that he had Nectrotizing Enterocolitis, when air gets trapped between the inner and outer lining of the bowels. His bowels were so swollen that his lungs collapsed. They did an emergency surgery Wednesday morning at 1:00am and put a drain tube in his belly to try to release air and pressure but that sugery was unsuccessful. The surgeon decided to do another surgery that they had never done to relieve the pressure in hopes to get his lungs working again. They pulled his bowels outside his body and put them in a ‘silo’ or bag hanging from the ceiling allowing more room in his abdomen and hoping that the swelling would go down and then they would try to put them back. They called Cassie at 5:00am Wednesday morning and said the surgeon had come in to check on the exposed bowel and said they were black and dead and needed to be removed now. They rushed to the hospital and the surgeon talked to them about the surgery. He told them the bowel still inside Cooper may or may not still be alive. If they were dead, there was nothing more they could do for him but if they could remove the bad spots, they would. After 3 hours of surgery, the surgeon came in and said they removed 80% of Cooper’s intestines. He had ‘just enough’ to make it. He is on 3 different antibiotics, blood pressure medicine, calcium, and immune booster, Lasix, IV fluids, and has been given blood and platelets multiple times. He had gained 3 pounds in fluid in just 2 days. He doesn’t look like the same baby she held Monday. He now has a bag that is similar to a colostomy bag, he is still on the ventilator, and sedated. He is stable and slowly improving but they have a long, long road ahead of them. I ask that you pray for their baby. He is such a fighter! They say Cooper will be in the hospital until spring and they live 2 hours away from the hospital.
Updates from Cassie (Cooper's Mom):
12/6 Cooper is about the same. Nitrix is down to 5 and they are slowly decreasing the ventilator. His electrolytes are all out of whack because he is getting so many fluids and losing so much fluid so they started him on potassium and magnesium. The arterial lines they keep putting in to get blood keep failing so the doctor might try to put in another PICC line. There are only a few nurses that can put them in so they are going to see if there is even a place to put one because of his puffiness. If so, they will do that today. He isn't as swollen as he was but he has A LOT of fluid to lose still. He opened his eyes quite a few times last night before we left. I just hate that he is going through all of this! Wish I could take his place!
12/8 Cooper is about the same today. He is still on the ventilator and isolator but only needing 35% oxygen. He still has a lot of fluid to lose. Kidneys are doing ok. Electrolytes are starting to balance back out slowly. Continue to pray for Cooper and me and Andrew as well. We appreciate all we can get!
12/9 Cooper is 1 month old today! It has definitely been a month to remember. I am so thankful that God blessed me with such an amazing little boy! I cannot wait to hold him again! All good news today. Not many changes! But continue to pray for him! He is my "Super Cooper!"
12/10 Cooper is in surgery again right now. They called me this morning and said his incision was leaking old blood and stool. They opened him up and found 3 small holes in the small intestines and 3 areas that look like they may become holes. The surgeon is going to cut the areas with holes out and over stitch the areas that are thin. The doctor said the bowel that is left looks good and healthy. Cooper's vitals are good this morning but he was crying in pain. It broke my heart! Please continue to pray for Cooper most of all, and me and Andrew!
12/11 Cooper is good today. He had a good night too. Blood work is all good. Blood gases are close to perfect. He is only on 25% oxygen through the ventilator. He is peeing well. Still swollen but not like he was. Continue to pray for him!
12/12 Cooper is doing good today. His blood pressure is a little high but they said that is caused by one of the medicines they gave him this morning. So they are going to give it not as often now. All other vitals are good. Blood gases have been good all night and all morning. The nurse said if they continue to be good, they will try to flip him this evening so he won't have to lay in the same position all the time. He still has a lot of fluid on him so pray he can get rid of that soon and get off the isolator. He is only on 21% oxygen which is room air. Continue to pray for our tough little man!
12/13 Cooper opened his eyes while me and Andrew talked to him and he even gave us a little smile!
12/14 Cooper is doing great today! Not a lot of changes. They plan to get him off one of the pain medicines today and hopefully switch from the isolator ventilator to the conventional ventilator in the next few days. Thankful for good days! God is good!
12/16 Cooper is doing good today. He lost 5 more ounces of fluid! He still has 1 pound of fluid to lose to be back to his weight before his first surgery. Chest X-ray looked ok. The nurse just has to keep him suctioned really well. He has his first eye exam today. Pray that he tolerates it well and they can get it done. He was awake for 15 minutes or so last night before we left so we got to talk to him some more! He is looking more and more like he use to and I love it! And he was trying to suck on his IV. He is so rotten already! I am SO blessed!
12/16 Cooper has had a great day! They took him off the osolator ventilator and put him on the conventional ventilator. He has done well with it all day. He is only getting pain meds every three hours now if needed. They did his eye exam today and it went well. His eyes are immature which is normal for him only being 36 weeks. He will get them rechecked in 3 weeks. Everything else is about the same! Thanking God for another wonderful day with my baby!
12/17 Cooper had a good night. He lost another ounce. Still on the conventional ventilator and doing well with it. Everything else is the same. He is awake a lot more now and that makes me so happy
12/18 Cooper is off the ventilator! Thank God! We are so happy! They put him on a cannula with 25% oxygen just to make the transition easier on him. They will do another blood gas at midnight! Pray he can stay off the ventilator and keep progressing!
12/21 Cooper is doing good. He is 6 weeks old today. His weight stayed the same! They removed the tube that was down his throat into his stomach. They said if he does well without it for 24 hours, they may try feeding him tomorrow. They plan on starting with Pedialyte then moving up from there. It's going to be a very slow process though. I am getting ready to hold him! I am so happy that he is making such good progress. God has blessed me an Andrew with such a strong little man!
I held Cooper! We both enjoyed it SO much! He even smiled real big and I got a picture!
12/25 Cooper had such a good 1st Christmas! Cooper met the Hutsenpiller's. Thanks for coming to visit! I bathed Cooper for the first time this morning. He got to wear clothes for the first time, which he really enjoys! He has been warm and sleeping since they put him in his sleeper. He got to see Santa and get his picture with him. And they started feeding him Nutramigen, 1mL every 6 hours. He digested it so he got another 1mL at 6:00pm. Pray he continues to do well with his feedings. This is one more step in the right direction! We couldn't have asked for a better 1st Christmas with Cooper!
- Becky Osborne
- Sabrina McKinney
- Mike and Yvonne Ouellette
- Sherry Amick
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