I am a mum of 2 lovely children. My first pregnancy was perfect and followed all the textbooks. When I fell pregnant with my second child, that too when according to plan right up to when I was 36 weeks.
It was the uncontrollable itching which first had me worried. I've never been one to moan about the horrendous morning sickness I had, backache, no sleeping that often comes with pregnancy but this itching over all of my skin was dreadful. My legs and my hands started to become red raw with the pain of being scratched. It was often no so noticeable in the day but as soon as evening approached, the itching started. I thought it was nothing to worry about as obviously your skin is put under immense pressure with stretching.
I had a routine check with my midwife and casually commented about the itching. This must have triggered something as she immediately rang the hospital to book me in for some blood tests and I had to go that afternoon.
I went and had some blood and urine taken for tests and my baby was monitored for about half an hour. I was sent home and would be notified if any further action needed to happen. I then received a phonecall that evening that I had to come back in the following day for some further discussions.
When I went back to the hospital, I was told that I had something called Obstetric Cholestasis. This is an uncommon condition in pregnancy which means that there is a build up of bile in the mum's bloodstream. I had yet more blood tests and my baby was monitored. I was to stay over night for more tests and more monitoring! I had an x-ray of my liver and a decision was made to induce my baby. There is some debate about whether it can harm the baby the pregnancy is allowed to continue. I left it to my doctor to make the decision.
My gorgeous little boy was born the following morning at 36 weeks. It was a very fast birth which resulted him needed some attention in the Special Care Baby Unit for 12 days. Apparently, this wasn't due to my condition just that he came so fast he didn't have chance to adjust causing difficulties with his breathing.
As soon as I had given birth, the itching stopped. It really was that instant. (Possibly the gas and air helped too ~ that has to be one positive to giving birth?)
Now, I have 2 happy and healthy children ~ and no itching!
If you would like any further information, I was given some worksheets at the hospital which can be found here. http://www.patient.co.uk/health/Obstetric-Cholestasis.htm
i was 32 weeks when i was given a blood test for high blood pressure, a couple of my hormones were too high and i had to then have weekly blood tests for 2 weeks until i was taken to hospital with suspected pre-eclampsia. my mum had it with my youngest brother and it can be passed on. considering it was my 1st pregnancy too, it made my risks higher.
when i was in hospital, i was monitored for around an hour and was lucky enough to have my nurse making me tea because i wasn't allowed off the bed. they took another blood test and then we found out that I had trace protein in my urine, my hormones had settled though so they didn't diagnose me with it, but my face was clearly puffy and my ankles and fingers were swollen, i had constant head aches and nausea as well as high blood pressure.
the weirdest thing was that if the hormone that had calmed down was the most important one, yet I had all the other signs of pre-eclampsia. i was discharged after a few hours as they monitored me for a little longer just to make sure I was OK to go home. my midwife was a great help, she pushed the nurses into doing more tests and keeping me in longer to make sure because she was concerned, but if she hadn't then I wouldn't know anything about the brush I had with Pre-Eclampsia and if the hormone had been higher, and I had had it, I may have never known.
When I was little like every little girl I wanted to have babies in my child mind the more the merrier! Although I never thought the journey to parenthood to be tough and sometimes tragic.
Every pregnancy ive had I have had issues ranging from being 16 days over with a little monkey to antibodies that had never been heard of!!
I will go through each pregnancy individually as I find that easier so please bear with me.
My son 2006
This was my first pregnancy. Everything went really well no major problems although I did have regular growth scans for the last 2 months as they thought he was going to be big. So D-Day arrived and nothing!!! In fact I went 16 days overdue I was eventually given a cervical sweep and 2 days later labour began J He only in fact weighed 5lb 14oz although everyone seemed happy enough with that!!
By this time I actually had the copper coil inserted so I was sure pregnancy could not happen I was wrong I fell pregnant as the coil had dropped although it couldn't be removed I continued the pregnancy unfortunately the coil kept doing its job and I suffered a miscarriage at 10 weeks.
My Daughter 2008
I had had the coil removed after my miscarriage in the hope of another child this happened in feb 08 much to our joy the pregnancy progressed ok although I developed antibodies C D and G they was nothing they could do about this apart from regular scans and blood flow measurements to detect any anaemia was induced two weeks early and eventually my little lady arrived weight 5lbs exactly. Due to the antibodies she had bad jaundice and was placed under phototherapy for a week(luckily I managed to stay with her) this eventually got better and we were able to take the little madam home, going back at 4 and 6 weeks to check her bilirubin levels carried on going down.
Angel son 2010
Although not expected we were so please when I found out I was pregnant again, my 12 week scan came back fine and showed I was due a week before my first sons birthday. However after my 16 weeks bloods were taken they were lost and I had been rushed in after having a slight bleed, I thought all was ok.However on the scan we were told my son had Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus(water on the brain) we were determined to keep him and were sent away to come back a few days later for another scan, the day arrived and I was taken down during the scan we realised that the water pressure on the brain had crushed it and that there was no lower back at all-our baby had died, I was admitted to the ward for induction of labour when a few hours later our angel was born.
Have found out I am pregnant again so very apprehensive was put on high levels of folic acid (5mg instead of 0.4mg) and wished best of luck. November 2010 and have had anomaly scan which has given us the all clear J My antibody level is the same but they have discovered that I produce anti D naturally.
My antibodies come from me being A rhesus negative and the father being O positive there is no explanation for my G antibodies only that they are mutations,I have unsuccessfully tried researching all of them online but have found no medical explanations. The chances of having a child with a Neural Tube Defect are low by all accounts and can happen to people of all ages and race.
So there it is I hope I haven't bored you too much and remember even when it all seems like its too much just remember that when you hit the bottom the only way is up. xxx
Also on Ciao under same name
Pre-eclampsia can be a serious condition that can harm you during pregnancy. It is dangerous for both the mother and the baby. The signs of this condition is swelling in the face and ankles, high blood pressure and protein in the urine.
If you have sudden swelling or just don't feel right go while pregnant go straight to your doctor or midwife. It is hard to know if you have this condition and the quicker it is recognised the better it is for you are they can try to control your symptoms or keep an eye on you and take action when it is needed.
I developed this condition just before my daughter was born. Luckily I only had it in the later stages of my pregnancy (in the last month). It can develop at any stage of your pregnancy straight from the start or even after you have delivered your baby.
Different people will take different strains of the condition and some people will not have all of the symptoms I have described above.
Personally I didn't know I had high blood pressure thought I had been sent down to the hospital as I was rhesus negative and I had, had a bleed so I needed to get an anti-D injection. This was normal procedure and I had several bleeds and injections during my pregnancy. It wasn't until I was at the hospital that I got my blood pressure checked and it was very high. 160/125. Now to be honest apart from being hassled that I was in the hospital I wasn't really aware of anything being wrong with me.
I was told that I was going to have to stay in hospital overnight. This thought petrified me as I had never stayed in hospital before however I knew it was best for me and my baby. No mention of pre-eclampsia was ever mentioned until I got to the labour ward. I think it was because the nurses didn't want to alarm me or make me feel more scared of the situation.
Thinking back before I had went to the hospital I had felt slightly funny. I was seeing floating spots in my eyes and I couldn't see the teletext clearly (I had been complaining to my husband for a few days that the television was blurry). I had also booked tickets for Lady Gaga and was finding the whole process very difficult (something I have done before and usually found easy to do). I was finding the simplest of tasks hard but I put this all down to my hormones and being pregnant. I was also slightly irritable and would have found myself getting annoyed very easily. Thinking back I think it was my blood pressure and I wasn't feeling right as the rest of my pregnancy I had been feeling great and hormones hadn't bothered me at all.
Once I was in the hospital I had several tests taken. My bloods was taken every couple of days and this was to check me and my function (for example my liver etc.) I also had a scan to check the blood flow in the baby's brain as sometimes blood pressure can affect this. Thankfully all came back fine every time up until the day she was born.
I had my blood pressure taken every 4 hours (roughly). If it was up I had it taken more and if it was down then I had it taken less. I was put on medication that was safe to take during pregnancy and I had to take them 8 times a day. I started off on less but I had to get more as it wasn't really controlling my blood pressure. These tablets sometimes gave me the shakes which I really hated.
On top of these tests I had a baby monitor strapped onto me twice a day to check the babies heartbeat and movements.
I had been admitted into hospital and let out the next day with my medication however when I was at home the midwife came and checked my blood pressure and I was sent back to the hospital where I remained for 2 weeks until my daughter was born.
While I was in the hospital I felt like I didn't want to see anyone and spent most of my time trying to not worry and to rest. I had very erratic blood pressure and it would go up and down like a yo-yo. During the night was the worst I think it was because I hated the ward I was in (other woman were in labour and could be rather noisy).
A few nights I took what I felt like a panic attack and the doctor had to be called to help bring down my blood pressure. They did this by giving me an extra different tablet than I had got from before. This tablet always brought down my blood pressure and to be honest I felt that the doctors beside manner was always nicer than the midwife's.
I hated the night time in the hospitals as it was always noisy but I think this was just me missing home so much. One night I took a bad panic attack and couldn't stop shaking and the midwife started shouting at me telling me that I needed to calm down that I was harming my baby. This really upset me as there was nothing I could do. She gave me valium (which I knew wasn't going to work as I feel it was because my blood pressure had risen so much). She argued with me to take it and I took half of it but my blood pressure still didn't go down and the doctor came out to me again.
I have to say that the doctor that came out to me was very nice he explained what was wrong with me, something everyone else forgot to do. He talked through how I felt and gave me a tablet to stabilise my blood pressure again. Looking back I am very cross with that nurse as she made my time worse in the hospital and I feel didn't give me the correct care and support I needed. I felt quite often that I was a nuisance. Everyone else in my ward only stayed one or two nights at the most so I was starting to feel like I was never going to have my baby.
The day before my daughter was born my consultant came to see me. I had been constantly told I was going to be sent home and then they would change their minds and I was going to be induced. I was never so glad to see the man who was going to decide what was going to happen next for definite.
My consultant was a very nice man he explained again what was wrong with me and that the baby needed to be born as soon as possible. My cervix wasn't very favourable but they would give it a go anyways. I talked to him about my worries on my blood pressure and he reassured me that I was in safe hands and that they knew what to do if it went to high that I wasn't going to come to any harm and neither was my baby.
That night I was induced my gels and my daughter came the day after that. I was never so glad to see my daughter born and I was so relieved that she was safe and well.
The labour and birth of my daughter wasn't actually that bad and my only worry if I get pregnant again is that I will develop this condition again. The worry of it before my daughter was born was horrible and very draining. In fact I was depressed and didn't want to see anyone or talk to anyone for them two weeks I was in hospital.
I have since spoken to the doctor and because my blood pressure went back to normal after I delivered my daughter I am not on any medication. I have been told not to worry about this happening again that I do stand more chance of getting it a second time than someone who hasn't had it but it doesn't necessarily mean it will happen. Apparently a lot of cases only happen in their first pregnancy and to prevent it from happening again I can take measures and be in good health before I get pregnant. I wasn't overweight though I do have family history of blood pressure.
It is a horrible condition to take but for anyone who does take it try not to be scared as it can be controlled and there are things that the doctors can do. If you think you have any of the symptoms make sure you seek medical help as this is very important.
A Condition that Can Prevent Pregnancy
Are you unable to conceive or have problems menstruating? There is a condition called Asherman's Syndrome that is responsible for many women not being able to become pregnant or have problems with menstruation. If you
have been trying to conceive for a baby and have been told that you cannot have children, then read on, because you could be one of those women that have Asherman's Syndrome.
What is Asherman's Syndrome?
Asherman's Syndrome is also known as synechiae or Scarring of the Uterus. This
Condition is unknown by many women. It is characterised as a woman having adhesions inside the uterus, which can scar and ruin the uterus. The front and back walls of the uterus can, also, stick together. In some cases, only part of the uterus is formed with adhesions. Women will not know this unless they have had the following symptoms or have been examined by a Doctor who is specialised in Asherman's Syndrome.
What Are The Symptoms?
Some women have scanty or absent periods. Some women can have normal periods with lots of pain. Some can have absent menstruation with pain at the normal time of onset each month. This indicates that menstruation is occurring, but there is a blockage caused by adhesions that stops blood flow from getting through the cervix. Recurrent miscarriage and infertility is another sign of this condition.
What Are The Causes of This Condition?
Sometimes after a D & C that is performed, because of a missed or incomplete miscarriage, a placenta that has not completely been taken away or an abortion, adhesions can occur causing Asherman's Syndrome. Pregnancy related D & Cs have been noted to have given a 90% cause of Asherman's Syndrome. Adhesions can, also, occur following pelvic surgeries such as caesarean section or after surgery to remove polyps or as result of infections, such as, genital tuberculosis or schistosomiasis.
Asherman's Syndrome can be treated by an experienced surgeon via hysteroscopy. There are many ways to prevent re-scarring after surgery of Asherman's Syndrome. One of the ways is for a surgeon to prescribe estrogen
supplementation to prevent adhesions. The idea is to remain scar free so that fertility is restored.
How Can Women Get Help
There is an online support group for women on Asherman's Syndrome www.ashermans.org There is a contact email address for Cyprus residents for anyone who may need advice about this condition. If you have a problem or think you maybe one of these women please look at this website for more details. If you are concerned and think you have all the signs of Asherman's Syndrome then contact Poly Spyrou via the online support group website (read her story below).
Successful Patients With Asherman's Syndrome
There are many successful stories regarding women with fertility problems that have realized that Asherman's Syndrome was preventing them from getting pregnant or miscarrying. This condition is widely known in the United States. It is a condition many women do not know about and the Asherman's Syndrome Support Group is trying to make this a worldwide recognized condition, so that women can be helped.
If you think you maybe one of these women, then please go to the following website for further information. The website for the women's Online Support Group for Asherman's Syndrome is www.ashermans.org
Original article was written by myself, Denise Larkin. http://www.bukisa.com/articles/36059
I was overjoyed when I discovered I was pregnant at the beginning of last year. Me and my boyfriend had been together just over a year but I knew he was the man I wanted children with so although it was a surprise it was a very happy one. I had bleeding in the first trimester so the doctor did another pregnancy test and sent me for a scan but the sonographer said everything was fine and we saw our baby for the first time which was the most beautiful sight in the world. At every midwife appointment from then on baby's heartbeart sounded strong and baby was moving around so much we were told we better get reigns for when it was a toddler. At 20 weeks we found out baby as a boy and at 24 weeks we got to see his face for the first time on a 4D scan. He had my nose and we marvelled at how cute our baby boy was. After that I was monitored by the midwife measuring my stomach. I was spot on the measurements I should be for the dates so we all felt very confident that baby boy was doing well. Me and my boyfriend decided he should be called Jack. Then one night at 35 weeks I started having stomach pains that felt like trapped wind (which you get a lot in pregnancy - so I wasn't concerned). When the pain was still there when I woke up the next day me and my partner wondered if they were contractions. We timed them and they were irregular so we thought it must be false labour. My partner went to work and then my mum came round. She thought I didn't seem right so I rang the maternity unit and went in. They put a heart monitor on my stomach but seemed to be having problems. I began to feel more scared than I have ever felt in my life before. A doctor came and did a scan but he did not say the usual things they say to you. I just saw a concerned look on his face. Me and my mum began crying and praying that Jack was okay. Another doctor came after what seemed a lifetime and said the words that ended my world "I'm sorry, your baby is dead." I began to sob and rang my boyfriend. I couldn't tell him the news over the phone but he knew something was terribly wrong and drove to the maternity unit. When he came in I felt so guilty for what my body had done. Another doctor came to examine me and said I was 8cm dilated and the pains were contractions. They explained I would be taken to a private room on the maternity unit where I would have to give birth to Jack. About 8 hours later I finally managed to give birth to Jack. It was so hard to keep pushing knowing that he was dead. When the midwife put him on my stomach he looked so pink and perfect that I thought he could still be alive and willed him to cry like the other babies on the ward I could hear through the walls. Me and my partner stayed over night in the room with Jack and leaving him at the hospital the next day was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. Next month it will be a year since we lost Jack and it doesn't feel that long ago. I can still remember everything from that day so clearly. We decided in Jack's honour we would live our lives the best we could. Jack showed us how precious and fragile life is and we will never forget our first born son.
It seems strange to have to rate this experience but I would choose 3 because the 8 months we spent with Jack were the happiest of our lives. We miss him every day.
Thank you for listening.
After a missed miscarriage at 12 weeks (where they tell you in the scan that the baby actually died previously but for some reason your body has chosen not to discard the baby in the normal way a miscarriage occurs) I was overjoyed to be pregnant again shortly after.
The pregnancy progressed well and I only suffered mild morning sickness. At 31 weeks I got home from work and my waters broke. I called my husband and we went into hospital. we arrived there about 7pm and were in the delivery unit until about midnight when they transferred me onto a ward. In the delivery unit they had me rigged up to monitors for the heart rate - which kept disappearing as the baby was small.
They gave me a scan and confirmed that the waters had broken. Luckily I wasnt getting any contractions so I wasnt actually in labour. They gave me a steroid injection to strengthen the babys lungs - we didnt know the sex as i wanted it to be a surprise. Anyway, so they transferred me down to a ward - - the ward had mothers with their new baby's on it so i was shut away in the corner by myself - it was awful. I was so scared.
The next day I had a scan and the woman didnt really give any information but as she walked off fdown the corridor she said oh dear to herself. At that point I was fairly hysterical as I was convinced that I was going to lose my baby. My husband was really supportive, and one of the trainee nurses had a look at the information in my file and comforted me saying she saw no reason for me to be so upset and arranged for a doctor to come and talk to me.
We went and looked around the neo-natal unit which was so emotional, I was in tears. The babys in there were so tiny and fighting so hard for their lives. We were then shown into the Special Care Unit (SCBU) which was a nicer place - the babies in here were stronger and could breathe for themselves.
Anyway. back down on the ward I was moved to the other end where theere were other pregnant ladies who were experiencing issues. I made some friends - I was in for 3 weeks before my daughter was born. The doctors said that they thought my baby was small for its age. I had 2 scans a week - 1 to check the doppler readings and the other to check there had been growth, and the amount of amniotic fluid was checked every time.
Twice a day I was rigged up onto a heart rate monitor to check whether the baby was becoming distressed, - once on a computer monitor and once on an older style monitor which is more frequently used during labour. The baby never became distressed, so they decided that 34 weeks would be the optimum time to deliver the baby.
Up to this point they had kept saying I could still have a natural birth... but then they started saying that it would be better to have a C-section as it was my first baby and we didnt know how I would be in labour and they didnt want to risk a long labour and the baby becoming distressed. I went along with their decision - they must know better than me!
C-section day came.
I was petrified - I knew nothing about C-sections. I hadn't read that chapter of the book - I was going to have a completely natural birth, with only gas and air to help me through... - well, thats what I thought - we had never attended the antenatal classes as I was in hospital at the time that they were supposed to be on - so there was no birth plan even in place!
I won't go into details of the C-section. It was probably one of the worst experiences of my life and I did not enjoy it much at all. Also I would hate to scare anyone. Other women seem to have very different reactions to the C-section and didn't find it a bad experience at all.
The baby was born and immediately she was taken to be assessed. I heard a little cry so I knew she was alive, but they didnt tell us for a good 10 minutes whether it was a boy or girl - and only did so when we asked.
I managed to have a 2 second peek at my daughter before she was whisked off to SCBU. She was doing well, breathing for herself. She weighed 4lbs 4.
I was wheeled in to see her after I had spent time in recovery - after I had a cup of tea and a biscuit and could start to feel my legs again they wheeled me through in my bed to see her. She was tiny.
Then as there were no beds available on the ward up near SCBU I was taken back down to the ward where I had first started. They then gave me a machine and told me to express some milk for the baby.
I had no idea what to do and over the next couple of days this resulted in incredibly sore nipples.
Baby Abi was kept in SCBU for 3 weeks after her birth. I sat with her every day from 7am til 10pm nipping home a couple of times only for food. It was a hell of a long day and highly uncomfortable on my wound, but we had decided it was best for my husband to take paternity leave when she came home, and I was not allowed to drive so soon after the C-section, there was not much option.
Because of this I think it took me a long time to recover from the C-section. During her time in SCBU abi stopped breathing a couple of times, and she was fed my milk via a tube and when i didnt produce enough to keep up with her it was supplemented with a special formula.
She came home at first with a tube so that she didnt tire herself out trying to breastfeed, but within a couple of days she was strong enough for the tube to go which was a relief - the first night at home she had ripped the tube out before morning.
She was very slow to start breastfeeding, but I was determined to feed her myself and not try with a bottle. Needless to say we succeeded. I know alot of mothers whose babies are in SCBU for a long time actually find that they cannot breastfeed, i think it really helped to spend so much time sitting with her and being with her.
I stopped feeding her shortly after her 1st birthday. She has been incredibly healthy - especially for a premature baby. The friends I made in hospital did not succeed with breastfeeding and both of thier little ones have had more colds, coughs and illnesses than Abi.
She has no effects from being born early and has caught up growthwise with where she should be now. If you do have a premature baby you just cope with what you have to. My main worry was that there would be long term effects, but at 34 weeks the baby is fully developed and is just putting on weight.
I am a little apprehensive about having another baby as I could not bear to go through all of that again. however I desperately want for her to have a brother or sister.
We are now trying for the next baby and I will be keeping my fingers (and legs) crossed for a full 40 weeks when it happens!
I have decided to share my experience of premature birth as I hope it could help others going through the same thing or help prepare parents to be if it does happen to them. I wish I hadn't skipped the section in all my pregnancy books about premature birth thinking oh that wont happen to me!
My first 2 pregnancies went without a hitch and my first son was born 2 days after my due date and my second son 3 weeks early but perfectly healthy and a great weight. My first birth was an uncomplicated water birth lasting 7 hours and my second lasted only 45 minutes with no pain relief! How was I to know my third would be so different!
The minute I became pregnant with my third child the problems began! I suffered with severe sickness and was very unwell. This passed at around 5 months and this is when I found out I was expecting a baby girl, we were overjoyed! From around 4 months I started experiencing very strong Braxton hicks, these are pain free contractions which are very common in pregnancy. I was experiencing these every day throughout the day and they were not really painful but very uncomfortable. My pregnancy continued and we were planning to have a home birth, I wanted my family around me and a birthing pool with candles and soft music! I wanted everything to be perfect for my little princess's entry into the world.
The nightmare began when I woke up on the morning of the 25th January 2008 with tightening that were slightly more uncomfortable than usual. I was 32 weeks pregnant and still had 8 weeks to go. I just put it down to me being tired and Braxton hicks and dropped my children off at school like usual. I was standing in the playschool talking to one of the teachers when I doubled up in pain. The tightening were starting to hurt. I tried to ignore it and pushed any thoughts of being in labour to the back of my mind as it was too early. After leaving the playschool I told my husband we best go to the hospital just to get everything checked out to be on the safe side. I went home first and picked up my hospital bags (I have no idea why I had already packed them so early, maybe subconsciously?) and phoned up my family to sort out getting the children picked up from school just in case we weren't out by then. At this point I didn't think for a second I was in labour.
We arrived at the hospital around lunchtime and I was taken into a room on the labour ward. After speaking to the midwife for a while she told me it was most likely I had a urine infection which can set off 'fake' contractions. I had all the normal tests - blood pressure, urine dip, etc. but everything seemed normal. By this time the contractions were becoming more painful and the midwife decided to give me an internal examination. Her face dropped and she told me I was 4cm dilated and the baby was definitely on its way. I went into shock at this point. After a scan to check baby was head down and not breech I received an injection to try and stop the labour and more to mature the baby's lungs, I was told I would need another one 6 hours later for them to actually work. I never got to have the next injection.
The labour progressed quickly and was nothing like any of my others. I was strapped to monitors and had to sit up on the bed and keep still! This was impossible for me as I had birthed both my previous babies on my hands and knees and had very active labours. I refused any pain relief including gas and air and just concentrated on getting through each contraction, I sang, screamed, counted backwards from 100 and god knows what else! My husband had called my Mum to be there with us as she has been all my children's births and I couldn't do it without her.
After two and a half hours I was fully dilated and the midwife broke my waters. I had 2 midwives in the room and 2 doctors from the neonatal unit set up around the resuscitator which was scary. I pushed for 10/15 minutes until, my baby girl was born onto the bed. She was absolutely beautiful with a mop of dark hair and lovely olive skin. She let out a loud hearty scream to tell us all she was here! The first thing I asked was is it definitely a girl as I had been so worried the scan had been wrong and everything I bought was pink! She weighed 4lb 3oz which is actually a good weight for a baby born at 32 weeks. She looked very tiny and vunerable though. Just like a little dolly!
They took my beautiful baby over to the resuscitator and checked her all over before wrapping her up and putting a little yellow hat on her head. I was allowed to hold her for less than a minute and have a precious photo taken before the put her in an incubator and rushed her off to the neonatal unit. All I wanted to do was hold my baby close to me like it should be. My heart felt like it had been ripped out of my chest and taken with them. I was still in shock and no tears fell.
After a shower I was taken up to the ward full of mums and newborn babies which was so hard. I just kept thinking I should be sat here with my little bundle of joy surrounded by visitors. My first visit down to NNU to see my baby was so scary and she was needing help with her breathing and having to be fed via a tube. She was covered in wires and monitors and shut away in a little incubator surrounded by machines. I was sent home the next morning but continues to visit my baby in NNU every day until she was 4 weeks old and we were finally allowed to take her home! I have decided to write all about our experience of the neonatal unit in a different review as this one is getting a bit long!
My baby girl is now one years old and doing well, she has got asthma and suffers from a lot of coughs and colds all of which is very common in prem babies. I wouldn't change her for the world but my plans for a big family have been destroyed as I could never risk having another premature baby and putting myself, my family and my baby through that again. I know I am lucky as she is alive and healthy and I am grateful for that every day but I will never forget the fear, pain and emptiness I felt.
I hope I am posting this in the right place but I wanted to share my story.
I was only 18 when first finding out that I was pregnant and it wasn't planned. However after talking it through with my parents and boyfriend at the time I knew I wanted to go through with the pregnancy.
I went to the doctors and was given all of the information I needed and a date for my dating scan which was a few weeks away. Happily enough I went home and began telling everyone my news as I was so excited!
However even though I was happy that I was pregnant I kept feeling something was wrong. I cant say exactly what this was more that in the pitt of my stomach everything was going to go as I planned or hoped. And this was often a concern I would share with my mom and other women around me who had had babies but their response was always that you always worry when it's our first as you do not know what to expect and although this did not totally take away my fear I tried to believe it.
By the scan though my fears were proved right, The sonographer said nothing while scanning that would indicate something was wrong. Instead she joked with me I had drank way too much as my bladder was so full my baby could hardly move. But the picture was so clear she pointed out his head legs and feet and his tiny heartbeat. Suddenly it all seemed so real. But as she printed out the pictures she explained I would need to see the consultant as she was worried about the fluid at the back of my babies head. In that time my world began crumbling away as I began crying in the waiting room.
The consultant explained the fluid was likely to be a chromosome problem and she booked me in for an appointment the next day at a specialist hospital.
The next day I went for my next scan (this time i didnt drink so much before hand) and watched as my little baby looked as though he was doing cartwheels inside me. Once the consultant had finished he explained to me my mom and boyfriend that my baby had a cystic hygroma which was a collection of fluid around the head which usually gathered around the lymph glands. He also explained that my baby had water gathering in is lungs and around his heart which was making it difficult for his organs to grow, and finally that he thought it was likely my baby would have downs syndrome. Because of this he offered me a CVS which is when a needle is inserted into your stomach to collect some tissue from your womb to test the babies chromsomes for abnormalties it was also explained that there was a small chance of miscarriage. I decided to go ahead with this as whatever happened I needed to know everything to prepare myself.
The CVS took no more then 5 minutes I will admit it was painful but it was over quickly. However after it I had severe stomach cramps and couldnt stand up straight at this point I thought I would miscarry, however my baby by was strong and held on in there.
Once I was home that day I decided to myself whatever happened I was keeping my baby. I knew now already I would do anything I could to protect him. If any of you are going through this I would advise to not use the internet as often you will never find any useful information. My mom wanted to research cystic hygromas and it showed pictures of disfigured children many of which were suffering from much worse cases and although the inernet can behelpful i feel it can sometimes be just as much a curse.
I was told after a few weeks wait that my son did have downs syndrome. This though did not change anything until I was called into hospital again.
This time I was informed my baby had a 80% of dying before I made it to full term and even if he made it due to the water under his skin and around his organd which were stopping the organs growing he would have no quality of life as he would be in hopistal with machines pumping his heart and breathing for him.
Because of this I was induced into early labour at only 16 weeks. This was a horrible experience for me the pain I wanted over but I knew once it was my baby had died. I was in labour for over 16 hours and eventually at 2.30 in the morning My son Callum was born and died on the same day, and at that point was when I felt my world had crashed and burnt around me.
I have not write this to scare anyone and I hope you do not see it that way. I just wanted to put my experince out there. If you ever feel like something is wrong then please go to the doctors.
Its been three years since my son was born sleeping and not a moment passes where I dont think of him and wish he was here with me, but I know now how much of a stronger person this has made me.
I would say I had quite a good pregnancy, although I will admit I didnt enjoy it as much as I should have!! my childs father and I split wen I was 3mnths pregnant and from then on I carried on all on my own! at the beginning I had the morning sickness feeling but was never actually sick, which can be worse sometimes. this might sound strange, and I swear its true, I only seemed to have the sicky feeling when I was down at my ex's family home, as soon as I'd near his town it would start, even while we were getting on.
towards the end of my pregnancy whilst at an antinatal appointment my midwife suspected my baby might be breech, but said it was nothing to worry about and that she would keep an eye on me. at my following appointment she again said there was a possibility he was breech, but she couldnt quite make out which way he was led, so I was booked to have a scan on wednesday the 31st of january 2007, 3 weeks before my due date. I woke up the day before my scan and felt awful, I thought a walk would cure it so walked to meet my mother from work, a miles walk and I still wasnt feelin any better. I had a bath to try and relax myself, then my mother made me eat a little food, which came straight back up. 7pm that night my waters broke.. 3weeks early on my first pregnancy and I was scared, I didnt no what to expect.
I got to the hospital by about 8.45pm was left hanging around for a while, got checked out, I WAS in labour, it wasnt a false alarm yay, so I thought! I was told that my babies head was down I was 2cm dilated, there was nothing they could do for me at the hospital I was jus to go home and wait. so I did & went straight to bed. at about 2.15am I was woken, I was having contractions, they were coming 2 minutes apart and getting stronger each time and with each contraction came the sickness and not just feeling it, I was litterally being sick with every contraction, it was horrible. a bath made me feel worse, in the end my sister and mum decided I had to go back to hospital.
by the time we arrived back at the hospital it was now around 6.15, again I was put in a room and didnt see a midwife for atleast half hour. then when I finally got seen I was checked and told I was 6cm and there was bad news... MY BABY WAS BREECH!! I was then checked again and again by a number of different midwives, one of them even stated her 20 year career that it was my little boys head she could feel. the first midwife who checked me went with her instincts and arranged for me to have an emergency caesarean, within minutes I had numerous doctors around me, taking blood, inserting a drip, takin blood pressure, shavin where they was to cut etc. I was pretty scared by now, everything was a blurr.
I continued to be sick, even whilst led on the operating table.
my little boy was born at 9.50am weighin 8lb 1oz, and was he breech???
YES he actually was breech, the surgeon actually found that I have a bicornuate womb, also known as a double womb or sometimes called a heart shaped womb which was preventing my unborn baby from getting into the delivery position. my condition is often hireditory but neither my mum or my grandmothers had it.
during my caesarean I lost 3 litres of blood so had to have a blood transfusion, I also had to have a balloon filled with saline inserted in my womb to help stop the bleed and also help it to contract and shrink.
I dint feel human, after an hour or so of feeling whoozy all I wanted to do was get up and hold my baby, the little boy id carried for 9months and stil not had the chance to meet. at 4.20pm in the afternoon after askin a nurse, I finally got to hold my little boy and didnt want to let him go!!
After finding out I had a bicornuate womb I wanted to know what one of these was, another name ive heard it given is a womb with two horns. I scrawled internet sights searching, got a few answers, little did I know until this point, I was so very lucky my little boy survived, one website described my condition as a common cause of miscarraige and premature birth. It can be picked up on a regular scan so how did they not pick up on this at the 3 scans I had?? I still do not fully understand what it is that I have, and dont suppose I will until I have another baby and get to quiz a midwife on what it is. I now have the fear that if i do ever get pregnant again, would that baby be lucky enough to survive the pregnancy like my first baby was.
I am going to write about pre-eclapsia, this is something that I have had to deal with.
I was having a normal pregnancy, working as normal and getting on with preparing for our childs arrival. I was going for my regular check up's with my midwife, which were 2 weekly. i had noticed that parts of my body were swelling up quite a bit, around my face, ankles, feet and hands, particularly my ankles and feet though, as my shoes were becoming quite tight. As this was my first pregnancy I didn't think anything of it, I just thought that I was maybe doing too much. I went to the midwife on the Tuesday, I was 30 weeks pregnant at the point, for this check up and I mentioned about the swelling, and she agreed that it was quite bad, she then checked my blood pressure (which I have never before had any problems with) and it was high, then she checked my urine sample, which had protein in it. She asked if I had been suffering from headaches, but I had not. She suggested I had pre-eclampsia and that I should go to hospital and take an overnight bag with me, as I'd be staying in, so they could keep an eye on me. I went straight to hospital and was hooked up to monitors, I was then told that I would have to get an injection to strengthen the baby's lungs incase they had to deliver my baby early.
At this point I didn't really know what was going on, I did not know what Pre-eclampsia was nor did I realise just how serious all this was. I was taken to the maternity ward after the injection, and they took numerous samples from me, the checked my blood pressure every hour and my urine and asked me if I had a headache. Because I didn't have a headache I took this to be a good sign, but it didn't make much difference. I was monitored all through the night and apparently I was not getting any better (I actually felt fine). When the doctor came to see me on the Wednesday morning, He explained that they would continue to monitor me for a few more hours and possibly have to deliver my baby that day.
My Mum and partner had been in with me at this time and my Mum got quite upset, she obviously realised the implications of having the baby 10 weeks early, but I had not.
About 2 hours passed and things had not changed, so the doctor came back and said that I'd be getting an emergency c section at 6pm. I absolutely hate knives and was petrified about this, I asked if i would be asleep for this and they said they'd prefer that I was and I did too.
I came around in the labour ward with a poloroid photo of my daughter, with wires everywhere, she was fine, she even managed to breath on her own for a bit. I was wheeled along in my bed to the Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU) to have a look at her, I did not managed to get very close, but I remember how tiny she was in that huge incubator.
We then were moved to a hospital with a better SCBU, we were only there 2 days and managed to get a transfer back to our own local hospital. She was 3lb and 1/2 oz at birth. She got home from hospital at 7 and a half weeks old and was now 5lb 2oz.
My daughter is now a happy and healthy 7 year old and has never had any problems with her development.
Most pregnant woman have no idea what this is, let alone the dangers it can cause. It is life threatening to mother and baby, if not caught in time. I am extremely grateful for the regular check up's and would encourage all pregnant women to ensure that you always keep these appointments and always contact your midwife if you have any queries, no matter how much you think you are hindering them, they are always there to help you.
I just wish there was more awareness of pre-eclampsia.
I have been extremely lucky with my pregnancy so far, and going overdue is among the least serious of any pregnancy complications. But to keep me occupied in my wait, I thought I'd put together a list of things to do if you do go overdue.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Re-calculate your due date using on-line calculators, books, magazines, advice from friends etc.
Comfort yourself with statistics that show just how many women go overdue (I've read 45%)
Go for a long walk (taking along of course medical notes, mobile phone and not venturing too far away)
Have a hot bath
Give yourself a manicure
Give yourself a pedicure
Sit in the nursery and admire all the new things you've bought
Have a nap
Learn how to use some of your more complicated purchases e.g. baby monitor, steriliser, camcorder
Have a curry
Enjoy a full night of sleep
Make a full inventory of your baby clothes
Start a baby scrapbook or journal
Send out an e-mail to all your friends promising to tell them when you have any news so that they don't keep texting you
Drink raspberry leaf tea to tone your uterus
Practice your pelvic floor exercises
Bounce on an exercise ball
Sort through your collection of pregnancy magazines and leaflets, cutting out key articles and filing into categories
Eat some raw pineapple
Try other traditional ways to bring on labour (nudge nudge, wink wink)
Watch baby kicking through your stomach - complain how uncomfortable it is and then worry if you don't feel anything for five minutes
Double check that you have everything in your hospital bag
Get the car cleaned so that it is nice for baby
Practice taking the car seat in and out of the car
Write out greeting cards for upcoming birthdays and occasions and stamp and address them ready to send out
Make sure that the house is tidy for all the visitors
Stock up on nice biscuits, tea and coffee
Go out for a grown-up meal with your other half
Go to the cinema
Video your tummy going up and down
Practice your breathing and relaxation techniques
Take photographs of your tummy at its largest
Plan your post-natal diet and exercise strategy
Make the most of a tidy, clean house
Two words - Perineal Massage
Check you have an up to date contact list to take to the hospital
Put on some loud music and have a sing-along to entertain baby
Write articles for dooyoo!
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Fingers crossed we won't have to wait too long. Thanks for reading!
With my second pregnancy, they started telling me the baby was lying in the breech position - ie bottom down. It was still pretty early - about 6 months and as far as I was concerned, not a worry. I knew that while first pregnancy babies rarely moved, subsequent pregancies often involved a shift in position.
Significantly, my mum's advice was that her second pregnancy involved the baby lying in a breech position until the last minute, but then the baby (my sister) moved and was delivered head first.
Weeks went by and at eight months I was called in to see the consultant. The scan was showing the baby was still breech and big. I have a small build, so the consultant's recommendation was that I have a C section.
I had three issues with this. I have not had one before.
I had a twelve month old baby at home who was still being carried everywhere and a C section would interfere with my ability to care for him.
Plus I had my mum telling me not to worry, and the baby would move. And my gut feeling was that she was right.
I rang the NCT and they spoke about having a trial labour. Someone else recommended doing the yoga position of the cat, to maximise the amount of room available to the baby. This I did like mad.
At just over three weeks before my due date, I went to see the consultant. I was scanned again - baby still breech. The consultant was superb, in that she was prepared to discuss the options with me.
Her advice was still a C section.
Or I could be X rayed, to assess accurately the size of the baby and the size of my pelvis. (X rays of a foetus do involve risks.)
Or, agree to be induced three weeks early - ie the following Monday and have a trial labour.
Any thing else would be against her advice.
I opted to be induced and have a trial labour, three weeks early.
I was admitted to hospital on the Monday and put on a monitor straight away. They asked me if I had felt the baby turn that weekend. I confirmed that I had felt only kicks. For the next 24 hours, I was internally examined repeatedly. In part to check the baby was still breech, and in part to try and get the labour started.
A senior nurse called Brenda examined me internally herself and said that she could feel the baby's 'bony bum.' She was present at every subsequent exam and on each occasion, told the examining doctor that 'the baby has a bony bum.' A student nurse said she could feel the baby's head and was immediately squashed by Brenda.
Significantly I was not rescanned.
After 24 hours of internal exams, being on the monitor and labour not starting, my waters were broken and I was put on the drip to begin a chemical induction.
Tuesday afternoon, I was taken up to the Central Delivery Unit, even though I was only a few cms dilated. I met my midwife who was going to delivery my baby. She was a smashing girl called Debbie, who had a really radical punky hairstyle. Laid on the bed on which I was going to deliver, she examined me again.
The first thing she said was 'I can feel the baby's head.' She checked the monitor print outs. There had been no signficant movement. Another internal exam. She said 'I'm sure its a head.'
She then went out and brought in a lovely Greek doctor. By this time, I had had about 20 internal exams over the previous 48 hours. I remember saying out of exasperation - 'Not another internal exam.' He laughed and said very kindly 'No no. I think its time to get you rescanned.'
They brought the scanner into the delivery room, and guess what, my beautiful baby girl was head down. Her sense of timing continues to be exquisite, even 9 years on.
The sense of relief felt by the doctor and the midwife Debbie was visible. He said 'Oh that is good news' and she smiled and agreed. But when he had gone, she literally started punching the air and saying yes, yes.
They both looked again at the monitor sheets over the previous 48 hours to see if they had missed the baby's shift on position. They hadn't, so she must have moved over the weekend and been head down when I was admitted.
The bony bum that Brenda kept referring to was in fact the baby's head.
They asked me whether I had felt anything strange at all. The only thing I could think of was that on the Saturday, I had become very tearful and had climbed into a wardrobe to hide! Extremely bizarre behaviour, but I had put it down to anxiety over going into hospital.
As soon as I told them about this, they both said, 'Oh that will have been it' as though I should have realised all along. Apparantly, the baby moving can be signified by an intense emotional response as well as feeling it physically.
So I had a normal delivery, (though my placenta didn't detach.) My baby was and is beautiful and was 6lb 12 at birth. The next night in hospital I was visited by the student nurse from earlier, who said 'I told you I could feel the head.'
Conclusions to be drawn - I'm not sure really.
1. It was brilliant having a consultant who was willing to treat me as an adult and discuss the options with me.
2. Babies do move at the last minute - as my mum predicted.
3. You don't always feel them physically shift position. Going temporarily nuts can be a sign of the baby having shifted.
4. They should have scanned me again, before putting me on the monitor.
5. I can't forget how massively relieved the midwife was at not having to do a breach delivery. How unusual are these? Is it just that doctors are so willing to opt for a C section, that midwives are losing this skill, or do they pose a significant risk?
6. The Cat Position is really good for your back, and may have helped the baby move!
Here I was January 1996 a 6month old daughter and I have just found out I'm pregnante again. i didnt feel they joy that I did the first time round, no sqeeling with delight no dying to tell someone, none of that. I felt scared, alone even though I wasnt. needless to say it didnt take long for all those feelings to go. in fact as time went by a my bump grew ever more, I felt relaxed and at ease. This time I knew what to expect after all its been less than a year since I went through it.
I went for my first scan feeling good about things, that didnt last long no matter how much they reassured me something was wrong there was a small shadow/blob which shouldnt be there, a fibriod. I was booked in for another scan when I was 18 weeks. back at home and as time went by I felt better everything felt ok I didnt feel any different and after all they did say it would cause any problems. My next scan date arrived nothing could be found must have been a mistake, all is well " Go home and carry on as normal"
All was fine over the next few week apart from the fact that very quickly I began to gain weight and look like a house. I was 28 weeks when I first went into labour yes I was a mess everything that everyone thinks went through my mind. Thankfully they managed to stop it and I was started on steroid injections as it was unlikely I was going to go full term. Resting all day was not an issue I had another child at home, but I knew I had to so I rested as much I as could and refused to think negative. I got child care put in place ready for when the day arrived I asked my midwife lots of questions not matter how silly they may have sounded. Stocked the freezer full of stuff for my husband and decided my daughter would move in with my sister so to keep her routine as normal as possible.
3o weeks and another scan all looked fine apart form the fact that I had a tiny foot wedged under my rib cage which was uncomfortable but everything else looked fine. 31 weeks pegnant its 630 am I have just had a bath and am now clutching the stair gate into the kitchen, i'm in labour. My husbamd calls the midwife and my sister within 15 mins Im dressed drinking a cup of tea with my midwife, husband and sister flapping around me I remain calm. The midwife calls the hospital makes sure there is a incubator free thankfully there is and we are on our way to hospital.
I am still remaining posotive thats what gets me through this I dont do negative. Upon arriving at the hospital the contractions are fast and close I cant get out the car my husband panics o I send him into get a nurse. 2 nurses come out with a wheelchir and within second I mout of the car and on way to a delivery room. im checkecd out no going back 9cm dialated baby is one its way. Im asked if a young man could be in the room whilst I deliver as he is training to be a midwife I have no problems, a dr comes out with an portable incubator and expalins that he/she will taken to special care straight away, Still I am calm. I will miss out some bits here but delivery was quick no pain relief at all just breathing technics. Our beatuifull daughter is born at 10.10 am she is rushed straight into specail care, I m checked out I feel great until |I was told i neede to go to theatre retained placenta which is normal in prem births. I come round after theatre to a photo of our daughter she's doing well......................
all I can say is try and remain positive easier said then done i know but thats what got me through and still does
My problem in pregnancy wasn't as major as some as the ones that are out there.
I had 3 scans with the hospital 8 weeks, 14 weeks and 20 weeks and all was fine, the community midwife I saw was happy with the way my pregnancy was progressing but my bump was small. I had a 4D scan at 26 weeks where they noticed our little girl was measuring 2 weeks smaller than she should and there wasn't a lot of fluid around her. They gave me all their measurements and told me to call my hospital. I spoke to them and got an appointment the next week, immediately the Dr asked me why I had a 4D scan, I just said "because I wanted to" I don't see it as a problem, she obviously did. This Dr wasn't my consultant she wasn't very friendly and basically told me nothing was wrong but they would scan me at 30 weeks if it made me feel better.
I had the scan and saw my actual cons for the first time and she was lovely, very helpful easy to talk to, and told us everything and answered our questions. She told me she expected her to be born early, and later on at my 38 week scan she told me she hadn't expected me to get further than 36 weeks. So I was always prepared I packed my bag at 30 weeks and it was always in the car with us when we went to appointments.
We had weekly scans, one week would be a doppler scan to measure the blood flow through the cord and the next week would be a growth and fluid scan. They suspected the reason she was only small is because my placenta wasn't working aswell as it should be. I resisted googling as it would be the worst thing I could do and one of my friends neice's had recently had a still birth so I was terrified as it was. The hospital did really look after me, at 36 weeks I had another scan and the cons who saw me was the first one who had asked me why I had a 4D scan. She told me nothing was wrong I needed no more scans. We weren't happy with this at all and I told her I wanted at least one more before my due date so she kept my 38 week appointment which was on the 27th december. I went to the scan and saw my original cons (the lovely one) and she wasn't happy she did an internal and I was 2cm so she decided to bring me in the next day for induction.
I was so glad I had kept the appointment because even though our daughter was healthy on delivery (she was 6lb15oz she was very tiny but a perfect weight) if I had gone on to be overdue we don't know how she would've coped with the labour or what the fluid levels were. I don't know why this other Dr had such a problem, it wasn't even her clinic on the days I went in. I was very relieved when I saw my consultant walk in on that day of my last scan.
My daughter is very healthy now, she is still small but I think its just the way she is meant to be neither me or my husband are big people. She eats a lot but she is very active.
My advice for people having problems in their pregnancy is to ask lots of questions don't feel stupid.
If you feel work is getting on top of you and not helping your problems, speak to your Dr. I finished work at 27 weeks because I was so tired all the time, which the consultant told me was because Alice was taking all my energy to make her grow. Within a few weeks of finishing work they noticed a difference in her growth.
And don't google anything!!!