Friday, February 20, 2009

And then we went back..

This is my facebook post after finding out that I was stuck in the hospital until delivery or 36 weeks..whichever comes first! The Dr said there is a small chance I could go home at 34 wks, but not likely. They (the practice) will decide then...

I had my 'regular' OB check up this past wednesday, also scheduled was an ultrasond for cervical length. If you recall, when I left the hospital I was about 25% effaced (thinned cervix). This check found that I had progressed to about 50-60% effaced..not a good sign. I was sent immediately to the hospital (with a short stop at home to get a few things). I was hooked up to monitors to check for contractions and fetal heart rate. Unbeknownst to me, I was having contractions! So I went another round of magnesium-sulfate to stop contractions. Initially the dr was hoping to have me back home by the weekend. By Friday morning I had held off contractions long enough to discontinue the magnesium. That lasted 6 hours. I started having regular, albeit mild, contractions again in the afternoon. So more magnesium. And a weekend discharge was totally out of the question. Friday evening they moved me to the high risk unit again (out of labor & delivery) and the magnesium was discontinued again Saturday morning. In order to get released I had to continue to stay stable (no contractions) long enough to do another cervical length test. (It is pointless to do a cervical length check during pre-term labor contractions, as contractions general purpose are to thin the cervix and dilate the opening)

So that brings us to today. I haven't had a contraction since Friday evening (that I have felt anyway) and so a cervical length was scheduled for today. I was told by the Dr that I would be able to go home as long as my length is greater than 1cm (at this point in pregnancy they want it to be 3-5. The length on Wed was 1.3cm). From the first measurement on the ultrasound screen, I knew I wasn't going home: length was .59cm. Half of what I needed it to be able to go home...and not only that it is wide open! (The cervix is supposed to be like a bottle neck, long but pinched together at the top. As labor and delivery approaches, the bottle neck gets pulled up and widens to allow the baby to make an exit...but this shouldn't start happening until 37 wks or so) So essentially the baby could come at anytime and at some point they will not be able to stop the labor. Although they will make every attempt to do so unless my water breaks..

I haven't seen the Dr since the ultrasound today and don't have 'official' word, however it is very likely that I will be here til delivery or 36 wks (5.5 more weeks). It was very disappointing to me when I came to this realization today. Don't get me wrong, I want a healthy baby and I want to be able to take my baby home with me and I will do what I have to do to make this happen...but there is still nothing like being home.

Physically, I feel fine (unless on drugs!). I have had a few 'moments' dealing with the stress of everything..but otherwise am fine. The baby is doing great. He is very active and has always maintained a strong heart rate. So despite his 'environment', he seems to be strong and is still thriving..

It goes without saying that our goal is a healthy, full term baby..but given the circumstances we also have tobe realistic. Our first goal is to make it to 32wks, while still early, many complications go away: brain bleeds and impaired vision are the big ones. Lungs and weight are an issue too, but he has been given steroids to stimulate development, and those can be addressed at delivery. Every day/week we make it past 32 will be a blessing and greater assurance of a healthier baby.

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