Wednesday, June 11, 2008

E-Mail Update #5

Well, I'm still in the hospital and no one is talking about sending me home, which is fantastic. Today I am 28 weeks pregnant! We are so happy to have met out first goal delivery date. Our next goal date will be 30 weeks, which will be here on June 25. My doctor told me last night that she thinks we are going to make it to at least 30 weeks, which is extremely encouraging.

The frequency of my contractions definitely increased over the last few days. The contractions really started picking up on Friday, and didn't seem to be letting up. On Saturday and Sunday my contractions were right around 2 minutes apart for quite a while, but thankfully some demerol helped slow down those contractions. Yesterday, when everything started up again, they decided to send me back to Labor & Delivery to get IV drugs to stop the contractions (I've been in the antepartum unit, and they don't have the nurse/patient ratio necessary to run IVs and monitor them closely enough). After several hours of magnesium sulfate, indocin, demerol, and antibiotics, I was sent back to my regular room in the antepartum unit in the wee hours of this morning. I'm feeling pretty good today with few contractions, but they will continue to monitor me closely. At my last check last night, I was just a bit more dilated at 3cm and remained 75% effaced.

An ultrasound tech came around and measured the babies on Monday. I was 27 weeks and 5 days pregnant when they were measured. Here are their stats:

Rosemary: 1 lb. 14 oz., 18th percentile for singletons, measuring 26 weeks and 0 days
Piper: 2 lbs. 3 oz., 36th percentile for singletons, measuring 27 weeks and 1 day
Henry: 3 lbs. 1 oz., 80th percentile for singletons, measuring 29 weeks and 4 days

And so Henry remains my little chunk. The doctors were more than a little surprised to see such a big baby in there (and yes, my belly is lopsided where Henry is sitting). And of course Rosemary is on the small side, which makes things a little weird. I have a baby measuring almost two weeks behind and a baby measuring almost two weeks ahead. Amniotic fluid levels for all of the babies are acceptable.

I am now going to be getting weekly ultrasounds to look at the babies and to check amniotic fluid levels. The babies will not be measured again for 3 weeks, unless something in the weekly ultrasound indicates that measurements should be done. The doctors said that for now the biggest concern is definitely the babies being born early, and that they are not going to worry about growth ultrasounds unless a pattern or problem presents itself.
Even though Gary and I are a little concerned about Rosemary being smaller than the other two, the doctors said that for now they have no concern over the growth rates of the babies. There will only be a concern if Rosemary drops below the 10th percentile, which would indicate that she may have "intrauterine growth restriction" (IUGR), which is common for multiples -- especially for the baby on the bottom of the pile. Another concern would be if Henry grows so big so quickly that he is preventing the others from having the room to grow properly. The doctors said that occasionally a decision has to be made whether to take all the babies early to save one even though the others are fine, or to leave them all in and see how the struggling baby does. However, the doctors stressed that we don't know that Rosemary is struggling because she may just naturally be small.

The doctors also reminded us that these are fraternal babies, so it may be that we just happen to have a big baby and a small baby and a medium-sized baby -- and that there is nothing wrong at all except that they have different genes. Gary's mom did point out that the babies in their family are usually very small. The babies in my family are usually pretty big. I think that my mom is as surprised at Rosemary's size as Gary's mom is surprised at Henry's size. . . .

I can't tell you all how thankful we are to have met our goal delivery date. When we were admitted to the hospital almost 5 weeks ago, I had thought there was no way we'd make it this far, but here we are still. And now we're hoping to make it to 30 weeks!

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