Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Welcome Briana! December 2nd, 2:34 am.

Briana Emily Hayes entered the world at 2:34 am on Wednesday morning, December 2nd. She weighed in at 6 lbs. 5 oz., which is great. She arrived earlier than everyone expected. Angela was given Cervadil at 8:30 pm on Tuesday, which is given to start softening the cervix in preparation for labor. In some cases like Angela's, it can induce full labor. At 1:30 am, she was at 2 cm dialation, at 2:15 am she was 5 cm, and Briana was born at 2:34 am. So it all happened very fast, and much to Angela's dismay, they missed the chance to do an epidural. Thankfully the delivery took only 5 minutes, three or four big pushes.
As soon as Briana was out, the NICU team went to work, and we were able to see her for a minute before they took her to the NICU.
When we were transferred from delivery to post-partum, we were able to go into the NICU and see her. She was on maximun support, and doing ok, but there were a few issues they were keeping their eye on. The heart was not functioning 100% due to the compression from the abdominal organs, and she was not getting all of the oxygen into her bloodstream that they wanted. Later in the morning on Wednesday, the neonatologist came down to talk to us and informed us they were going to have to put Briana on ECMO, which was not preferred, but it was necessary. ECMO is a system which oxygenates the bloodstream by completely bypassing the heart and lungs, which allows them to rest and continue developing. To do this, they insert tubes into the carotid artery and jugular vein and pump her blood through a machine to oygenate it. The procedure in itself can be risky, which is why we didn't prefer it. The process can also delay surgery to repair the hernia, because the blood is thinned during ECMO. We were pretty nervous about it, but as I was writing this, the surgeon came down to tell us that it went very well. The plan now is to leave her on this for as little amount of time as possible, and gradually take her off of it as her body works for itself. We are preparing now to go and see her again. As always, we truly appreciate your thoughts and prayers, please keep them coming. We will keep in touch.


  1. Congrats Jim and Angela, and welcome Briana! I'm glad to hear everything went well for the most part. You guys are in mine and Heather's thoughts and prayers.
    Jason and Heather

  2. I'm so glad the birth went well. Sad to hear poor Angela didn't get the epideral- but at least it was fast.

    Briana looks like a big beautiful girl!

    Stay strong! Stay positive! And know that Briana and you guys are in our thoughts and prayers!

    Every single one of those doctors you will meet, and nurses you will come to know are fantastic! Hang in there!

  3. Congratulations! We'll be praying that everything goes well from here on out.

  4. I will pray for your little girl while she is on ECMO. We all know how scary it can be, but like you said so necessary! I can't wait to hear the updates of how well she is doing! You are in our prayers!

  5. Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful daughter! My daughter, Dakota, is an ECMO/ CDH survivor. She was put on ECMO on her 2nd day of life and ended up being on it for only 3 days, although 10 days is the normal run. Even though the ECMO machine is scary, it is a wonder and it gives our babies' bodies a rest when they need it most! Dakota is home and thriving and almost 1 years old (crawling and pulling up on things!)! So don't worry-this is just a bump in the road! We know you can do it Briana!
    Mom to Dakota
    RCDH Survivor

  6. Congratulations on the birth of Briana! She is beautiful. My son Ian is a 5 year old ECMO/CDH survivor. ECMO is going to give Briana's heart and lungs time to rest and get get her to her surgery repair. ECMO is scary, but believe in miracles and believe in your daughter's strength. Fight Briana fight and amaze your mommy and daddy!! Praying for your daughter.

    Tracy Meats, mom to Ian and WY/CO/UT State Rep. for CHERUBS (