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Messages - wren

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1
Preterm Labor: Anything and Everything / Re: Anyone on Nifedipine?
« on: May 14, 2018 at 05:34 PM »
Hi EnglishRose23, Thanks for the note! I hope your little one is still cooking and that everything is going well!

Hi OBMom, I'm supposed to stop the Nifedipine at 34 weeks as well. It sounds like you went past 34 weeks? Have you delivered yet? So great to hear that you got to 36 weeks!



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Preterm Labor: Anything and Everything / Anyone on Nifedipine?
« on: May 12, 2018 at 08:12 PM »
Hello!

I was wondering if anyone was on Nifedipine and how long you stayed on it? When did labor begin after you stopped taking it?

This is my second pregnancy, and  I was first hospitalized for pre-term labor at 27 weeks, and was 1 cm dilated. I was given betamethasone, Indamethacine, and Magnesium Sulphate and then sent home on bedrest after 4 days. At 32+3 I felt intense pressure and started having contractions again and when I went in, I was 4 cm dilated and my cervix was about 9 mm long. I was given a rescue course of betamethasone and put on Nifedipine. I was sent home again after 4 days and am supposed to stay on bed rest and continue Nifedepine every 6 hours. I am 33 weeks and 1 day today and grateful to have made it to this point but am hoping to get to at least 34 weeks. Would love to hear your experience with Nifedepine?

My first son was born at 27 +4 and passed away when he was a week old from complications in the NICU so this has been a very stressful and emotional pregnancy.

Thank you!!!


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Hello,

I was treated for preterm labor at 27 weeks and was 1 cm dilated when I went in to triage. I was discharged from the hospital after 4 days since my cervix was stable at 1 cm and I wasn't having contractions. I am now on bed rest at home. How long is it possible to stay dilated? I'm hoping to get to at least 34 weeks!

Thank you!

4
This is such heartening news, OBmom.

I am in a similar situation, and am holding out hope that I will get to at least 32 weeks, maybe 34 weeks.

My first child, Oskar, was born at 27 weeks and 4 days due to spontaneous pre term birth. I went in to triage with mild cramping (about 3 in an hour) and he was born about 6 hours later. He unfortunately suffered from extensive grade 4 brain bleeds while in the NICU, and my husband and I made the agonizing decision to discontinue care and take him off the ventilator. He died in my arms when he was 7 days old.

We are pregnant with our second child, also a son, and we thought everything was going well. I had a transvaginal cervical check every other week, weekly progesterone shots, and stopped working at 23 weeks. At 25 weeks, I started experiencing mild sporadic cramping and when we went into triage, everything looked fine. My cervix was long and closed and a fetalfibronectin test was negative. AT 26 and 6, I had sporadic cramping all afternoon. When my husband came home from work, we decided to go back to triage, and again they sent us home and said my cervix was closed and I just had uterine irritability. The next morning, I woke up bleeding, and when we went back to triage, I was 1 cm dilated. I was still just having sporadic contractions sometimes a couple of hours apart. I was admitted and given betamethasone and magnesium sulphate and monitored in the hospital for 4 days before being sent home. My cervix is still 1 cm dilated (although 2.8 cm long at the last check a few days ago) and I am on modified bed rest. I am staying hopeful that this time we'll have a different outcome. Just knowing that the baby did get steroids makes me feel a bit better. I am 28 weeks and 1 day today.


5
What's Your Story? Tell us. / Re: Preterm birth and loss at 27+4
« on: January 23, 2018 at 01:09 AM »
Dear Freshview,

It does sometimes seem crazy to me that I wanted to try again, but I did. I didn't want to give up and I wanted to have some hope. The need was so strong even though I had (and have) so much fear. I can't really explain it.  What gives me hope that this pregnancy will be different is that I am on Makena, and am being monitored very closely by a team of high-risk specialists. I am also going on medical disability starting at 22 weeks and will not have work stress to deal with. You and your husband will do what's right for both of you, and I wish you all the luck.

EnglishRose23,

There's a lot of evidence that preterm birth has a genetic component. This article discusses recent research.
https://www.marchofdimes.org/research/links-between-genetics-and-preterm-birth.aspx

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What's Your Story? Tell us. / Re: Preterm birth and loss at 27+4
« on: January 17, 2018 at 10:30 PM »
Hi EnglishRose,

Thank you for your thoughtful reply. I am so sorry for the loss of your daughter but am glad to hear that your son is doing well.

I did receive Magnesium Sulphate to stop my labor and also received steroids to help my son's organs/brain develop faster and prevent bleeds.  Unfortunately, I delivered him about 4 hours after receiving steroids so they wouldn't have helped. A full dose is usually 2 days since it takes that long to get from the mother to the baby in utero. The NICU doctor at the autopsy told us that even 2 days of steroids would have resulted in a dramatically different outcome. I didn't however, know to go into triage until I had cramps. I had no symptoms of preterm labor until the morning of my son's birth.

I am on Makena for this pregnancy and have very different care. It still upsets me that despite a family history of unexplained preterm labor, I was considered low risk and not offered extra monitoring for my first son, but this time I will be monitored on a weekly basis. I hope it makes a difference.

Wishing you a healthy, gentle pregnancy.


7
Angela,

Thank you for your kind response. I've done so much research on preterm labor, and haven't come across this test yet, but will bring it up with my doctor. I am currently 16 weeks pregnant with my second child, and it has been very stressful.

Thank you.

8
Has anyone else experienced preterm labor without an explanation?

Despite extensive tests on my placenta, blood work, an autopsy etc, my doctors haven't been able to give me a reason for why I went into preterm labor at almost 28 weeks.

After a healthy pregnancy I went into spontaneous labor at 27+4 weeks. My labor could not be stopped and I delivered my son within 8 hours of waking up with what felt like mild period-like cramps. My son weighed 2.4 pounds and was healthy but for his preterm birth. He died of complications relating to preterm birth when he was 7 days old.

The hardest thing has been not knowing why it happened and what I can do to to carry to term in a subsequent pregnancy.



9
What's Your Story? Tell us. / Preterm birth and loss at 27+4
« on: January 14, 2018 at 02:02 AM »
Hello everyone,

My first child, a son, named Oskar was born due to spontaneous preterm labor at 27 weeks and 4 days and passed away when he was a week old. I wanted to share my story of preterm labor to see if anyone had a similar experience, and if they went on to have a successful subsequent pregnancy.

My son, Oskar was conceived via IVF after trying naturally for about a year. I was 38. I was extremely concerned about preterm labor because both my sisters had gone into preterm labor at 34 and 35 weeks respectively with their first children (both their sons are now healthy pre-teens). But despite being an IVF pregnancy, over 35 with a family history of preterm labor, I was considered low-risk. I had a BMI of 21.5, ate balanced healthy meals, and walked and took a prenatal exercise class while pregnant. We did the first trimester scan, free-cell DNA testing, and the 20 week anatomy scan. At my 20 week scan my cervix was 3.2 cm but the doctor said that was normal.  At my monthly appointments, my doctor told me everything looked great. 

But I didn't feel great while pregnant. During my second trimeseter I was so fatigued that there were days at work I'd fall asleep in the bathroom stall while peeing. I am a lawyer, we relied on my health insurance and I made more than my husband so I had planned on working through my pregnancy. My job was, in the words of my therapist  an "abusive environment" and besides dealing with really difficult people (a lot of people who yelled), it was stressful. Still, I limited my time at work to 9 am- 7 pm and didn't work late at night. Work caused me a lot of anxiety and I had terrible insomnia both before my pregnancy and during it. I told my doctor about work stress, my fatigue and insomnia. She told me fatigue and insomnia were normal and that women had babies in war zones with no complications. She suggested I walk more to help me sleep better.

At 25 weeks I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. My doctor wasn't worried and said it was fairly common for older women. I made sure I ate 5 times a day, walked after meals and ate whole grains, veggies etc. At about 25 weeks, I also felt the pressure against my cervix increasing, and my doctor said this was normal since the baby was head down. The pressure wasn't constant and I stopped worrying about it. I've gone over my symptoms the week before I had Oskar a million times, and the only thing I felt was increased pressure.

The day Oskar was born, a Saturday, I woke up with really mild period-like cramps low down in my belly. I almost couldn't feel them when I woke up but after a cup of decaf coffee, they got a bit stronger. They came and went, and first my husband and I thought they might be Braxton Hicks contractions. They didn't seem very regular nor were they were very painful. Still, we called the nurse who told us not to worry, and to come down to triage.

I ate a little breakfast, showered and we went to the hospital. The cramps were so mild that I didn't think I had anything to worry about and the nurse had been so reassuring. When we got to the hospital, they were a little stronger and I probably had about 4-5 every hour. I was 1 cm dilated. I was given drugs to stop my labor and a shot of steroids, and told that I'd need to stay in the hospital a few days. Within an hour or so, I was 4 cm dilated and I was told that I would deliver that evening. About 8 hours after getting to the hospital, I was fully dilated. My membranes were still intact and my water was manually broken, but I delivered vaginally and the whole process was less than an hour.

My son was born breathing on his own and was 2.4 pounds. The first day of his life he was breathing with a little mask, but then his lungs collapsed. We had been told that this was likely because preemies have a "honeymoon" period and then get very tired. He was intubated and also needed a blood transfusion. That first night was scary, but the next day, he was stable and the doctors in the NICU (which was one of the best in the country) were very positive. They did warn us that the big risk was brain bleeds, and that they would do a scan at 7 days. During the first few days he was kept very still so not to cause any brain injury. Oskar was feisty, would hold our fingers, kick his arms and legs in protest when his diaper was changed, and was beginning to digest my milk which I pumped every 3 hours. We were really positive.

The brain scan however revealed severe grade 4 brain bleeds on both sides. The autopsy revealed that they were more severe and deeper than the scan had shown, and had occurred 2-5 days before his death. After the scans, we made the very difficult decision to discontinue life support, and Oskar was removed from the ventilator. We held him in our arms for an hour while he died. Our NICU doctor told us that given how healthy Oskar was except for the fact he was preterm, he though that a full dose of steroids would have resulted in a different outcome. But because our labor was so quick, Oskar would not have even gotten even one dose of steroids (it takes a while for the steroids to make its way to the baby from the mother).

My placenta was examined, and I had a lot of other tests done after Oskar's death. The doctors have not been able to give us a reason for my preterm labor. They do not think it was my cervix and I did not have an infection. I am convinced that the stress of my job contributed to it, but the doctors tell me that there's no real medical evidence for that.

I am now 16 weeks pregnant with our second child. I am closely monitored, and I will have scans every 2 weeks to check for changes in my cervix (at my scan yesterday, my cervix was 3.5 cm). I am on low dose asprin and also just started a weekly Makena progesterone shot. While I did go back to my job after Oskar's death, I moved into a less stressful role. Still, I decided to resign at the end of this month to eliminate work stress. I swim instead of walk (my doctor does not recommend bed rest and suggests I keep exercising), continue to eat very healthy meals and see a therapist to help with my anxiety related to this pregnancy.

I'd love to hear from people who might have had similar unexplained preterm labor. Any advice for this pregnancy?I don't think I will survive the death of another child. I miss Oskar every day.

Thanks!




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