Toddler leaves NICU, PICU after more than 500 days

A little girl who had never seen the outside of a hospital is thriving at home with her mom.

Autumn Robinson was born at 23 weeks, weighing only a pound, WMAQ reported.

Autumn was considered a micro preemie when she was born in March 2021, “Good Morning America” reported.

But after more than 500 days in a neonatal intensive care unit and then a pediatric intensive care unit, Autumn was taken home from the hospital last month at the age of 17 months.

She was born early because her mother had suffered a uterine rupture, but Autumn’s mother, Tyler Robinson, said her little girl had a spark.

“If she came out fighting, then we were going to fight, and she came out feisty and we nicknamed her ‘Feisty,’” Robinson told WMAQ. “From then on, she’s just been a fighter.”

Autumn fought through bronchopulmonary dysplasia, a chronic lung disease. She had a 50% chance of survival, “Good Morning America” reported.

Robinson made the tough and terrifying decision to move her daughter at the age of 5 months from one hospital to the only one in Illinois that treated BPD, where Autumn got various medications and had to have a breathing tube surgically placed.

But once she was on a breathing machine, Autumn was able get stronger and “start to do normal baby things and have more interactions that were meaningful with her mother,” Dr. Megan Lagoski, the neonatologist who treated Autumn, told “Good Morning America.”

From the day she was born, Autumn celebrated every birthday, every holiday, and every milestone at a hospital. Robinson made sure to celebrate them all — not only for Autumn but for the other people in the NICU.

“I decorated for everything. I put out candy for the nurses and … you know, we’re in this bad situation and we’re feeling [like] we’re never gonna get out of it, but a little candy here and there, it’ll bring a little happiness to somebody,” she told “GMA.”

But those in-hospital celebrations came to a culmination after day 524 when Autumn was ready to go home, WMAQ reported.

However, Autumn still has more challenges. After leaving the hospital, she still had a tracheotomy tube to help her breathe and a feeding tube, WLS reported at the time.

Robinson and home nurses are helping Autumn with the full-time care she requires but she is still making progress at home while still on a ventilator. She’s sitting up and playing with toys, “Good Morning America” reported.

September marks NICU Awareness Month.

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