Saturday, September 17, 2016

Twin Adventures :: Preterm Labor

I think that the theme for our Dallas baby shower {Adventure Awaits} was completely appropriate. Eli and Maddie aren't even here yet, and they are already making things interesting :)

On Tuesday, we had our second night of the Prepared Childbirth class, which included our hospital tour. So we walked all throughout Labor & Delivery to see where we would bring babies into the world, not expecting to see it again the next day...

On Wednesday, I started Bible study at Woodcreek and was excited to be back in a study with other women. Laura and I went to lunch, and I headed to meet Mike for {what we thought would be} our last Level II ultrasound with the perinatologist. Babies looked good- growing nice and big, both weighing right at 4 pounds. But the ultrasound tech picked up an irregular heart beat for Maddie, so she had the doctor take a second look. My heart stopped as he listened in a little closer; baby girl's heart beat did not sound right. It seemed to slow in some places and drop off altogether in others. Definitely irregular. The perinatologist was great to explain what he thought he could be seeing and to calmly tell us that we needed to do some more monitoring to know for sure. So we were sent to Labor & Delivery for some {what we thought would be} monitoring for Maddie.

We got checked in about 5pm and settled into our room. I was hooked up to the fetal heart rate monitors and got to listen to our babies' heart beats. Once we were settled, the nurses came in, slightly concerned, asking if I had been feeling any contractions. Y'all, I had felt absolutely nothing. So when they told me that I was having contractions every 3-5 minutes, I was shocked. How does that happen??

And then they checked my cervix, and I was already dilated to a 1. So I was in preterm labor. Again- I HAD NO IDEA. So we were admitted, and I was hooked up to what seemed like everything possible:
  • Fetal heart rate monitors {already connected for babies}
  • TOCO monitor {to monitor my contractions}
  • Blood pressure cuff {which went off every hour}
  • Finger heart rate monitor {for my heart}
  • IV fluids {to see if maybe I was just dehydrated}
  • Leg compression cuffs {since I would not be allowed to do much moving}
  • Catheter {which lasted about 4 excruciating hours before I begged for another option}

Needless to say, they knew my every move :)  They monitored me overnight and didn't see enough improvement, so they started me on magnesium and antibiotics to see if they could get the contractions to slow/stop. That stuff is no joke haha. I definitely think it could have been a lot worse, and I am thankful I only felt minimal effects from it. But it wasn't awesome. 

So all this time they were focused on stopping labor, but I wanted to know about Maddie! The good news is that after monitoring her a little more, they didn't see the heart block the perinatologist was concerned about. But she definitely still had an arrhythmia. He thought it could be due to my Humira and that I would need to come off it. I will absolutely do whatever I have to to keep my baby girl safe, but I am definitely terrified of that idea. I called my GI, and there are currently conversations being had between my GI, my perinatologist, and my OB to find the best plan. 

Thankfully, the magnesium worked! My contractions slowed to about 2-3 an hour, so Thursday night they stopped all of my IV meds/fluids and monitored me overnight to see how I did without the medicine and fluids. Thankfully, my contractions stayed at about the 2-3 an hour rate, even stopping altogether at one point, but it was enough for them to be happy enough to send me home. 

Date #28: Change of plans! Dinner at home {courtesy of Ben & Lindsay} to start bed rest...but just thankful to be headed home #wcsavethedate16

So now I am on full bed rest, but I am so thankful that I get to do that {for now} from home. The goal is to bake babies another few weeks. Really, we want to make it to at least October, which would put us at 34 weeks. I will have a number of follow up appointments with doctors next week, so hopefully we will have some more answers soon for Maddie's irregular heart rate and the best plan about stepping down my Humira dose. And hopefully, my contractions will stay calm, and/or I can figure out what they feel like so I am not progressing faster than I am aware.

Adventures for sure! :)

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