My sisters baby is 6 weeks old. He was born four weeks premature, after an at risk pregnancy, many trips with false labor, bed rest and two week stay in the hospital.

He now seems to grunt in his sleep along with sweating, sleep apnea, and when he is sleeping he turns very pale and has dark circles around his eyes. What could be causing this?



Does your sister’s baby doctor know about all of these things? I hope so. If not, it’s best to let him/her know.
Grunting can sometimes be nothing to worry about. But, grunting in a tiny baby can be a sign of lung and/or heart problems. Babies generally do not sweat, either. If he hasn’t had his heart checked yet, he needs to.
Apnea (not breathing) and being pale with dark circles under his eyes sounds like he is not getting the rest he should. Apnea can be related to prematurity, but he should be passing out of that phase by now. Also, a low red blood cell or hemoglobin level can affect breathing patterns (and skin color). That can easily be checked by a “blood count”.
If his above tests are all normal, I would also check his brain (with an MRI scan) to make sure that everything looks normal. The brain is important for regulating breathing.
The little guy sounds like he has some problems that need to be checked on. Maybe your sister has already reviewed these things with her doc, and they are “monitoring” him. Anyway, just make sure that mom has addressed these all with the doctor.
To answer your question…I would want to make sure that your nephew doesn’t have anemia, a heart or lung problem, and finally look at a picture of his brain (with an MRI), if necessary.
I hope that helps, Mike