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Adopting Premature Babies

Two6 Week Old Premature Baby

We are currently trying to decide to move forward with a situation and would love some input. We were presented with a baby boy, born via C Section at 26 weeks. Birthmom had a uterine infection that created a medical emergency. The infection has not caused complications with the baby.

He is currently off the ventilator and breathing on his own. He has no signs of heart defects, cranial ultrasound was done and was normal (no brain bleeds), no chest tube. He is receiving TPN via IV and is currently 12 days old. He was 830 grams at birth, lost 50 grams and has gained it back. He seems to be thriving and had an Apgar score of 7 and then 8.

He has not been exposed to drugs or alcohol.

Does anyone have any experience they can share? We are concerned about massive developmental delays, Cerebral Palsy and blindness. He has not been tested for ROP and can’t be until 31 weeks. Please share anything you can. Thank you in advance.


Our child was 3’ at about 30wks, in NICU for 6wks., and is now thriving at 7 y.o. We were nervous at first, but had good conversations with our local pediatrician and NICU dr., who we asked to call the NICU dr. at baby’s hospital. That report was positive, so we moved ahead.

The child you describe is smaller & earlier, so could you ask your doctor to speak with doctor at baby’s hospital for a professional consult? This might help you get a professional opinion (or two) of what NICU doctors have seen in similar circumstances.

Good luck and God bless you all and the child!

Posted by Ron on Apr 27, 2016 at 6:49pm

We were presented with twins born at 27 weeks, 2lbs and 2lbs3oz.  Neither could breathe on their own and one had a category 4 brain bleed.  They had many issues along the way.  We followed through with the situation and now have two thriving 2 year olds. One of the things that I learned in our 4.5 months in the NICU is that these little souls need parents by their side to help them overcome many obstacles.  What does your heart tell you?  If it’s telling you this is your child go and be by his side now and forever.  Nothing in life is guaranteed,  If you have any specific questions feel free to PM me.

Posted by michelemg on Apr 27, 2016 at 7:09pm

Why is he on tpn? Gut issues in preemies can be really severe, and long term tpn can cause liver damage.  Everything else you said sounds promising, but 26 weeks can be hard to predict.

Posted by rn4kidz on Apr 27, 2016 at 8:23pm

We have just been called with a very similar situation but given almost no medical info. We were told to try and contact a pediatrician on Monday, though I’m not sure how they are supposed to guide us without specifics on the baby.

Beachgirl, were you able to talk to the baby’s doctors directly about his situation?

Posted by walkinginfaith on Apr 30, 2016 at 1:25pm

You might want to read this article, written by Drs. Dana Johnson and Judith Eckerle, on adopting a premature infant:

Best of luck as you make this decision!

Posted by AFC Editors on May 05, 2016 at 2:18pm

While HIPAA laws won’t allow a doctor to talk directly to you about a premature infant’s situation, if you are not the legal parent or guardian, doctors will often share information with other professionals, in the interests of better care.

If you have a pediatrician lined up, see if he/she will be willing to call the doctor responsible for the baby’s care.  You can also call an adoption medicine clinic, like the one at the University of Michigan, founded by Dana Johnson, MD, and see if a doctor there can get more information on the child.


Posted by sak9645 on May 05, 2016 at 3:37pm

Adopted two premature, drug exposed boys…on HIV+, mild CP, brain bleed, and other health issues.  Both boys, now young men graduated from college the same year.  Through PT and lots of love in action, siblings and special accomidations, these guys are healthy at 26 and 27 years old.

Posted by pipercub9 on Aug 20, 2016 at 9:15am

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