What to expect? — The Bump
Preemies

What to expect?

I dont know if this is the right place to post but I am just looking for some advice and stories.  I was admitted on Tuesday for pre-term labor at 31w3d.  Using Mag they were able to slow it down and by Thursday I switched to Procardia which seems to be working now so they let me come home on bedrest.  I am 32 weeks today and have had both steroid shots already.  I was 3cm dialated and 70% effaced on Tuesday night but there wasnt any change since then.  I am still waiting for the results of my FFN from Friday.  So now I feel like I am waiting on pins and needles for something to either happen or not happen.  I wasnt feeling the contractions so now I question everything I feel, is it a contraction or do I just have to pee even though I peed 5 minutes ago?  The monitor in the hospital was great because if I felt something I could look there to see if it was a contraction or not but I feel lost without it now.  So I guess my questions are - has anyone experienced this?  How long after you were sent home did you go into labor again?  How were your 32 weekers?  What should I expect?  I know it could potentially be a long 8 weeks until he decides to come but it could also be tomorrow.  It is just so hard not knowing.  Also, we dont know what caused this, it doesnt appear to be an infection since I only had a slightly elevated WBC but no fever, pain, etc.
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-----Lisa-----

Re: What to expect?

  • I had ptl starting at 23 weeks. I made it too 34 weeks. I just stayed off my feet and only got up  to pee and shower. My mom moved in with us and waited on me like i was a baby. I had other complications so ds had other issues at birth. Oh and i went into labor and was back in the hospital about 6 times in between 23 to 34 weeks with contractions that needed a little more boost  of meds to stop. But i did make it to 34 weeks. Just hang in there!
  • Hey! I was admitted at 31 weeks and had the baby at 32 weeks. I had pre-eclampsia and was on bedrest, but in the hospital. I also had both steroid shots.

    My baby had very few problems. First, she was a little small, but that was probably due to IUGR from my pre-eclampsia. Not sure if preterm labor is a risk factor for IUGR. Anyway, I was induced and delivered vaginally; it went fine, no problems for me or the baby. She did have jaundice that took a while to get rid of, but she was fine. Lastly, she did have a grade 1 (minor) brain bleed, but that is pretty much to be expected with a preemie and it was already resolving by the time we left the NICU with her. We will have another ultrasound at 6 months and I totally expect it to be completely gone.

    She spent 4 weeks in the NICU. She did not need a vent or oxygen at any time. I understand that is not typical and that a lot of babies do need a vent or oxygen. She also didn't need a CPAP because she didn't have apnea. SHe didn't have any gut problems or infections and her heart appears to be fine.

    We just had her 4 month appointment and she was in the 50th percentiles for everything, so she is pretty much caught up, according to her pediatrician. She had very steady growth.

    If you end up delivering early, you will need to learn a lot of new things. Don't be scared. All NICU babies go through stages of growth and sometimes setbacks. Your baby will need to do certain things before he/she can be released from the NICU, like maintaing his/her body temperature in an open crib and sucking from a bottle. My plans to breastfeed did not work out, but I pumped for three months and everything turned out OK. If your baby comes soon he/she will probably be fed by a tube down his/her nose, which is totally normal. You should try and get a tour of the NICU with your husband/partner/whomever is supporting you in this and meet with the neonatologist ahead of time. (They can wheel you around if you are not supposed to walk.) I didn't get to do that, but my husband did, and it really set his mind at ease and gave him a frame of reference for our impending preemie birth. 

    Remember, even though you may be completely miserable stuck in bed, you are doing the best thing for your baby by keeping him/her in there for as long as possible. And if you have any inkling of feeling like something's wrong, call your doctor or go to the ER. The best thing you can do is get prompt medical attention. Good luck!

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  • Hey Lisa.  I don't have any advice since my little ones came much earlier than 32 weeks, but I just wanted to send you lots of good vibes and let you know I'm thinking of you!  I hope your little guy stays put for at least another two weeks.
  • I went into ptl at the beginning of my 33 week and had my baby later in the week.  They don't know why I went into labor and labor was delayed by shots and I had steroid shots.  DS spent 15 days in the nicu, he was 4 lbs, 14 oz and is now almost 20 lbs at 5 months.  He is fine... right now.  He did come home on an apnea monitor.  Good luck.
  • Our little guy was born at 32 1/2 weeks very unexpectedly (due to PROM apparently for no known reason!).  It's good that you've already had both of the steroid shots.  It sounds like you are doing everything you can.  Our son did very well--he was on CPAP for about 48 hours, then oxygen cannula for 24 and then on room air.  His biggest challenge was temperature regulation.  He "failed" the transition from the isolette to an open air crib 2 times and finally made it on the third.  He ate well from the beginning.  He weighed 4lbs, 6 oz at birth.

    The NICU can be a very scary, anxiety provoking experience.  You are smart to be trying to learn what you can.  Things I wish I had known--that it's OK to call/ask about your child as much as you want (I felt sometimes like I was bothering them), find out the times the neonatologist will be with your child so you can be there to get info, if you want to breastfeed and have to pump at first use a hospital grade pump and learn about how to establish supply (it takes pumping about 10 times a day).

    If you have family willing to help, take advantage of that both now and after the birth.  Do everything you can right now to keep your little one in you to grow and gain weight--don't overdo it and let others wait on you!

    Sounds like you are doing what you can.  Good luck and sending positive thoughts your way!

     

    Kim

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  • I had an emergency c-section at 32 weeks. My boy was small for a 32 weeker (Details in bio) but he did really well. We were in the NICU 4 weeks. If you think you will have a preemie, I would get the book "Preemies: The Essential Guide for Parents of Premature Babies." There is a lot of valuable info in that book - I wish I had it when DS was still in the NICU. Good luck - let us know what happens!
  • I went into preterm labor at 26 weeks, was in hospital for 3 days and sent home with Procardia. I was on bedrest for 8.5 when my doctor took me off Procardia (34 weeks). He was confident that I would make it until 37weeks. Wrong! A day later, I went into labor for 27 hours. DS, who was born at 34 weeks, spent 11 days in NICU due to his lungs not being developed and jaundice. I wish that my doctor who have taken this more seriously and given me the steriod shots.

  • I went into PTL at 31w and delivered a few hours later by c/s (both babies breech) at 31w1d. My twins are happy, and healthy. Although they are small for their actual age, they are growing well and are otherwise normal. Arriving early is scary, to be sure, but often things turn out just great. You've already made it farther than me, and I hope your able to keep baby in there another couple of weeks. I'll be thinking about you!
  • The book the pp mentioned is a good one but only read the parts that apply to you--it has TONS of info in it and much of it (hopefully) won't ever apply to you/your little one.  I started reading it when ours was in the NICU and it was very overwhelming.  Once I started just reading the parts I was interested in/applicable, it was much better.

     

    Kim

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