From a story in McLeod Magazine by Jessica Wall with
Dr. Eric Coughlin, McLeod OB/GYN Associates
Dr. Douglas Moekel, McLeod Neonatologist
Dr. Thomas Bannister, McLeod Pediatric Intensivist
“We call the first hour of life ‘The Golden Hour.’ This is the most important hour of an infant’s life and there are many different things that the NICU team has to do for the infant.”
— Dr. Doug Moeckel, McLeod Neonatologist
Hurricanes generate many elements – rain, wind, high tides and very low barometer readings. Some believe that a low barometer can trigger labor in pregnant women. Such was the case on September 14, 2018, with Hurricane Florence made landfall on North Carolina’s coast and Jarrica Sports went into labor with her triplets. She spent two weeks on the McLeod Pre-Term Labor floor in Florence, where a team of physicians and nurses continuously monitored her. Their efforts to prolong her pregnancy for a normal delivery were cut short when Jarrica developed a serious complication that could lead to infected amniotic fluid. Even then, her babies were only 27 weeks, considered “extreme” pre-term.
McLeod OB/GYN Dr. Eric Coughlin immediately prepped for a C-Section, calling in McLeod OB/GYN Dr. Brad Campbell to assist along with the McLeod Neonatal Intensive Care Team standing by.
“For Jarrica’s delivery, we had four patients to care for,” said Dr. Coughlin. “In addition to Jarrica, each baby had an individual care team in the Operating Room to manage them upon delivery.”
Around 9:30 p.m., Tallon arrived weighing only two pounds; then, Avery arrived, weighing one pound, thirteen ounces; and finally, Tavner arrived at two pounds, two ounces.
In the NICU, the main concern for the triplets was Respiratory Distress Syndrome (a common breathing disorder affecting premature infants), plus regulating their body temperature, blood sugar and hydration levels. For more than two months, the members of the infant trio faced collapsed lungs and brain bleeds. And only a few months after heading home, Tallon, Avery and Tavner were in the McLeod Health Cheraw Emergency Department with signs of respiratory illness. The two boys were transported to the Pediatric Intensive Care unit at McLeod Regional Medical Center in Florence, where Tavner was diagnosed by McLeod Pediatric Intensivist Dr. Thomas Bannister with neonatal epilepsy.
At home now with Mom Jarrica and Dad Derek, the triplets continue therapy and doctors’ visits.
“We were so grateful to have this level of women’s and children’s care close to home,” says Jarrica.
ACTION YOU CAN TAKE
Read the entire story on Page 28, McLeod Magazine.
Learn more about McLeod Health Maternity Care.