MILWAUKEE, Wis. (WBAY) - Action 2 News reporter Kristyn Allen went on Facebook Live to give an update on her little girl Braelyn at Children's Hospital of Milwaukee.
Braelyn has been at Children's Hospital since Feb. 13. She was transported there after the respiratory illness RSV hit her hard and fast. Doctors decided Braelyn's only hope was surgically attaching an ECMO. It's a machine that pumps blood out of her body, oxygenates it and then recirculates it. It gave her little lungs a chance to heal.
CLICK HERE for the full story on Braelyn's journey.
Kristyn is happy to announce that Braelyn is now out of the Intensive Care Unit. She hopes they family can go home for good by Easter.
CLICK HERE to watch Kristyn's Facebook Live video.
Braelyn is off ECMO, and is doing well with an oxygen cannula. She's now just getting a half-liter of oxygen. Previously, she was on "high flow" oxygen.
Braelyn also has a feeding tube that bypasses her little stomach and goes into intestine.
"We're hopeful that she will be weaned off her oxygen. There's a possibility she could go home on some oxygen that she would have at night. Otherwise she's doing really well. Her oxygen is 100 percent right now. When they put her on ECMO, her oxygen was 68, so she really needed help and needed to be on ECMO. So right now she's doing the most of work on her own and her oxygen is 100 percent so that's fabulous," Kristyn says.
Once challenge is weaning Braelyn off all of the medications she's been on during her battle.
"When she was on ECMO, she was on a continuous drip of fentanyl, so she had to get off that. She's off the fentanyl. Now she's on methadone. They've weaned her down quite a bit off the methadone, but they're kind of holding steady right now because she is scoring intermediate for withdrawal symptoms. She's also on something called Clonidine which is like an anxiety medication, and a Valium. So she needs to get weaned of those, ideally the methadone, before we go home," Kristyn says.
Braelyn also needs to come off the feeding tube. She'll have to learn to drink from a bottle again. A speech pathologist has been working with her on that.
In total, things are looking good for Braelyn to live a healthy life.
"I'm really thankful and grateful to say that doctors think that everything's going to be fine and she's going to be fairly normal, which is really amazing considering everything she's been through," Kristyn says.
Kristyn became tearful when talking about just how critical Braelyn was and how close she was to losing her little girl.
"I did have a chance to talk to the doctor from Milwaukee who came to get her for her transport. And I said I can talk about it now, so I need to know how close was she?
"He told me, he said, 'I really didn't think she would live from the drive from Green Bay to Milwaukee.'
"So considering she's been through everything she's been through, it's amazing that she's come so far and that she's doing so well," Kristyn says.
Kristyn's dad has been staying in Milwaukee full time while Kristyn travels home to Green Bay to help her husband, Greg, take care of Braelyn's twin, Brielle, and their three-year-old daughter, Bailey.
She's incredibly thankful for the community's support and all the lovely comments on Facebook and email.
"Thank you so much for watching the story Sarah Thomsen did with us. The response from the community has been amazing," Kristyn says. "I've read many of the emails and comments. I appreciate all of them."
Kristyn gave us a look around Braelyn's hospital room during the Facebook Live. She has Braelyn's Easter dress hanging up there. She says that's the goal--be home by Easter.
Action 2 News will keep you updated on Kristyn's story. Watch for another Facebook Live in the near future.