Well week 32 came and went quicker than I thought, we’d only just been at week 28 and now we’re back at the hospital going through the same process again. Only this time it wasn’t quite as straight forward as last time!!! I find the last trimester is the quickest, it seems to be flying past and its hard to keep up with work, Sophia, life, Mrs D and dodo!! I feel slightly overwhelmed by the whole thing at the moment, like there isn’t enough of me to go round. However back to the task at hand, week 32, so the process is the same as always, scan first then upstairs for the obligatory pee test and then the wait for the consultant.
Small rant, horrific length of time to wait this trip, they were running very very late. Appointment time was 9.55 and we didn’t get out until nearly 12.30. Rant over.
So we get the scan, the usual measurements and tests!! “ooh its measuring big” well that’s interesting, how big I ask? Well its showing around 35 weeks, ok no big deal I think. Everything is showing well though, strong heart beat etc. We’re advised that the consultant will talk to us about what the measurements mean, according to the computers calculations the baby is also weighing 5lbs already!!!
Ok, up the stairs we go to the waiting room, Mrs D heads straight in for the obligatory pee test and then its back out to wait for the consultant. Mrs D mentions blood pressure is low, would you believe it, nurse did it twice to make sure. I should add this is where all the waiting really came into a league of its own, wow, I’ll not complain really, I just find it hard as its such a boring waiting room. Anyway, Mrs D and I have time to discuss baby names…….again. “Karen Duncan” was the call, brilliant its our turn!!
“We’ve met before” the consultant says, “have we” I think!! “yes we have” Mrs D says!! This particular consultant had dealt with Karen after the last birth and helped with her journey of recovery, it made me feel more comfortable, someone who knows our journey, someone who knows Mrs D, someone who isn’t just trying to learn our notes 30 seconds before we walk in. Admittedly it has been 2 years since Sophia’s arrival but she seems to remember.
So I’ll break it down into bullet points of the main issues here:
- baby is measuring 3 weeks ahead of schedule
- there is a large volume of fluid (albeit in proportion to the size of the baby)
- the blood tests are showing Mrs D has low iron levels
- due to the baby being large there is a chance Mrs D may have gestational diabetes
Wow, a lot to take in and not what I thought I was going to here that day!! Right let’s talk options, whats the plan for these issues. I must take a time out here to credit Mrs D, she is so clued up with everything, she reads and reads and reads and soaks up all this information so when someone like a consultant discusses things with her she understands, it make sense and she can digest it there and then. Me well that’s a different story.
So, the baby is big, what does this mean? Well some of you will know the issues this brings, however if you are like me then you won’t know. If the baby is to keep growing at the rate it is then there is a chance of shoulder dystocia. Basically where during the birth the head comes out but the shoulders are too big for the journey and the baby becomes stuck. This then causes a major issue for the doctors, making it very difficult to deliver the baby. So what’s our options? Well its simple, either a natural birth or a c-section. This causes somewhat of a dilemma, Mrs D is very set on giving birth naturally but we need to think about whats best for everyone involved. The large amount of fluid is not so much of a concern for the consultant as its in proportion with the baby, had it been a small baby and large fluid levels then yes an issue and likewise a large baby with small levels of fluid.
Next issue, the low iron levels, consultant recommends iron tablets from now until term. Given the blood the last time Mrs D needs to get her levels up. Chances are we could go through that kind of loss again so while its not a major issue its important she has good iron levels.
Lastly the gestational diabetes, when carrying a larger baby it can cause diabetes during pregnancy. The recommendation here is for Mrs D to get a glucose test. Basically means Mrs D having to wait around the hospital for about the 3 hours and within that time get blood taken and have a large glucose drink. The consultant called the relevant department and was able to get an appointment for the following day. I wasn’t around for that but Mrs D had the test and in the afternoon got the results, all normal thankfully!!!! No diabetes, that’s a relief, one less thing to worry about.
So, what’s next well it’s back in 4 weeks again. However, when we return if the baby is still growing on the same trajectory then we are going to have to make some decisions. By this stage we’ll be at week 36 but it could be we need to discuss the possibility of an early arrival. 1 option is to bring on natural birth through an induction just earlier than planned, this will come with the issues as I mentioned above. The other option is for baby to come out the ‘sunroof’, again coming with its own issues.
How do I feel? Well I’m happy the baby is healthy!! Mrs D is baking a baking a good one, Sophia was similar albeit not as big but still almost 9lbs. My concern really isn’t the baby, I know the baby will be ok whatever option we choose, the doctors will do their bit and the baby will be delivered. My concern is Mrs D, what ever way I look at it I worry. If we go down the natural birth road then there is the blood loss, good chance what happened first time around will happen this time. What about the shoulder dystocia, what impact will this have on Mrs D? More blood loss? Recovery time? C-sections, I know the recovery time can be long. What of the incision, what issues does it cause due to the baby being large? Is there great blood loss with this? What happens to Mrs D?
For me it’s the lesser of 2 evils, both options may go better than expected and I will have no worries but given past experience it screams out warnings signs to me, hence the lesser of 2 evils. I would suggest it will come down to what is safest for both baby and Mrs D plus what will have the less recovery time. This all based on my opinion and how I feel about the situation, at the end of the day Mrs D and myself need to make a joint decision based on what is advised by the professionals. At the end of the day they are the ones with the experience and they need to be able to guide us through this. Week 36 will be a big week for us.
In the mean time we have Sophia’s 2nd birthday to look forward to and there is no point worrying yet as we might get to week 36 and the baby has slowed on the growth front and there isn’t a decision which needs to be made.
So until week 36 we wont know, I’ll be back to let you know how it goes and what the outcome, so until then………..