(*Note: I tend to write this blog in chronological order, but I am jumping forward a bit to share some photos and quick information about an infection my baby Noah suffered during his first few weeks at home after being discharged from the NICU.)
The day Noah was discharged from the hospital in April 2014, my husband and I were a nervous wreck.
He had been in the NICU for a little over a month and we were terrified about all the “what if’s” that could happen at home. And while we were ecstatic to bring our tiny 4 pound baby boy Noah home, we were also heartbroken to have to leave his twin brother Nikoh in the NICU. It was a stressful time to say the least.
So when we noticed what appeared to be a little rash on Noah’s face, our stress level was amplified.
Since he was born two months premature and super fragile I knew I had to pay attention to everything, no matter how small it seemed. So when we noticed a tiny cluster of white bumps surfacing on his right cheek, we started researching in our preemie baby books to see if we could figure out what it was. Originally we thought it could possibly be baby acne, so I made sure to keep it clean and monitored it for a day or two to see if it would clear up on its own.
Unfortunately it got a lot worse very fast. Before we knew it had spread to his left check and chin, and started secreting some clear fluid. We called his pediatrician and she told us to bring him in that day.
Noah was examined and his pediatrician used a cotton swab to gently scrape off a few pieces of the rash which she sent to the lab for testing. As it turned out, the rash was not baby acne but instead a skin infection caused by bacteria that needed to be treated right away. There was no way to track down if he caught the infection at the hospital or at home. So the possibilities were endless.
Noah’s pediatrician prescribed him Cephalexin, an antibiotic, and the topical ointment Mupirocin, to get rid of the infection. It took upwards of three weeks for Noah’s infection to clear up, and it got worse before it got better. We were super hesitant to give him any type of medication because he was premature, but we trusted our pediatrician’s recommendation.
The infection went through a series of phases. At first it secreted white liquid, and after a few weeks it started to dry out and scab, then it started to flake off on its own.
I was extremely careful to keep Noah’s hands covered with mittens when I put the ointment on his infection, and I had to be super cautious that his clothes didn’t get snagged on his cheeks or chin.
While Noah was trying to fight off his infection, Nikoh was discharged from the NICU. My husband and I had to be very careful to make sure Noah and Nikoh did not share any clothes, burp cloths, mittens, boppies, blankets or anything else that could potentially pass the infection to Nikoh.
We were very worried that the infection would lead to serious symptoms, but overall it didn’t result in anything abnormal. Although Noah was very uncomfortable and it looked horrible, over time it healed perfectly and today you would never know he had any type of facial infection.
I just thought I would share our experience with this infection in hopes of helping other mommies and daddies of twins and singletons know what to look out for!
In the NICU we learned the importance of constant hand-washing and sanitizing in order to keep our preemies free from germs and infections and this experience really solidified my decision to ALWAYS make sure anyone who comes in contact with my preemies has washed and sanitized their hands before touching my babies.
Some people may think our constant hand-washing is excessive, but I beg to differ. I will do anything in my power to keep my babies infection free!
XO~ Noah & Nikoh’s Mommy