NICU - Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Having a baby that is admitted into the neonatal intensive care unit, or NICU, can be an overwhelming event. Infants are admitted into the NICU for a broad spectrum of illnesses, diseases, conditions, as well as prematurity. A team of neonatologists, neonatal nurse practitioners, and specialized neonatal nurses provide the most advanced and critical care for these neonates.

Parents with a baby in the neonatal intensive care unit must first understand the reason why their infant is in a critical care unit. While many mothers may know of a certain condition or anomaly ahead of time, there are many times that a mother will unexpectedly go into labor, delivering a preterm infant, or have a baby with a condition, illness, or anomaly that is completely unexpected.

Regardless of how and why the infant came into the NICU, it can be a tough ordeal for any parent. Remember that the NICU staff is not only there to care for the infants, but to help parents through the ordeal as well. A mother or father should remember to ask any and all questions they have, as it is very important they completely understand the condition of their baby.

In the most critical cases, life support is often needed, such as breathing machines, blood transfusions, and other procedures or methods to help perform functions the baby is too weak or underdeveloped to do themselves. While this may seem quite invasive for such a tiny baby, it is the greatest care that can be given to them, giving them the strongest chance for a positive outcome.