May 06, 2013

Week 29- Pregnant with a baby boy, Placenta Accreta/Percreta, Placenta Previa, Thalassemia

little baby of mine...
isn't it cute how his fist is under his chin?
what a miracle.
{background info- Hello! My name is Jenifer and this is the story of my high-risk pregnancy.  I am currently pregnant with my eighth child (A BOY!!) and was diagnosed with Placenta Previa and Placenta Percreta.  I also have Beta Thalassemia which contributes to severe anemia.  While this has been a difficult pregnancy and we anticipate a difficult delivery, IT IS WORTH IT!

We NEVER regret our decision to get pregnant with this baby and are so grateful for this experience!!

 Accreta affects about 1 in 2500 pregnancies.  (It is pretty rare!)  If you have had previous uterine surgeries, your risk of Accreta increases to 1 in 500.  I have had two previous c-sections and one D&C, following a miscarriage.  Although I was at risk, prior to being diagnosed with this condition, I never knew Placenta Accreta existed.  Accreta is becoming more and more common as abortions and c-sections becoming more common.  

What is Accreta?  Accreta is where your placenta attaches to your uterine wall instead of to the lining of your uterus.  There are three different levels-- Accreta, Increta, and Percreta.  Accreta is where your placenta is attached to the first layer of uterine wall, deeper than the lining-- often Accreta's can still deliver and save the uterus.  Increta (17% of all Accreta cases) is where the placenta has grown into the muscle wall of the uterus-- this usually requires a c-section/hysterectomy.  The rarest form of Accreta is Percreta where the placenta actually grows through the wall of the uterus and attaches to other organs in the abdomen   Percreta is very dangerous and will require a c-section and repair of other internal organs that are affected.  Percreta affects only 5% of all who have Accreta.  (What is 5% of 1 in 2,500 births? Very rare.)  Most commonly, Percreta involves the bladder which is in front of the uterus (anterior placenta).  Sometimes Percreta involves the bowels with a posterior placenta.  Rarely it involves the uterus, bladder, cervix and bowels...  this is my condition.

I have been on complete pelvic rest and modified bed rest since 12 weeks of pregnancy.  I was admitted to the hospital at 28 weeks and have a scheduled c-section/hysterectomy for June 6 (D-day).

My husband and other kind family members are taking care of my home and family while I spend most of my days sitting or laying.  This time of resting has been difficult, but it has also been a great gift.  I am thankful for every week that this baby is growing bigger and healthy inside of my womb.  I can't wait to meet this little guy-- our grand finale!!

This is a record of my pregnancy for my family and for those of you who may be experiencing something similar.  Yes, I share a lot, perhaps too much.  Thank you for being a part of this journey with me.  I am one who learns much from the experiences of others and I'm happy to share my experience with you, in the hopes that somehow it may help.}

Week 29-- (Hospitalized since 28 weeks)

Doctor Appointments.
I have been in the hospital for a week now.  It's been an adjustment, but I feel blessed to be here.
I see doctors at least once every morning and they drop in throughout the day.

They gave me two shots of steroids to help the baby with his lung development.

I had a central line put in my chest.  It's a small gauge PICC line inserted into near my armpit.
At first it was very sore, but it's getting better.  We flush it every 8 hours (15 second alcohol wipe, put on the saline, check for blood withdraw, put in 5 ml of saline, put in 3 ml of heparin repeat for the other side) and they draw all my labs from it.  It is a pain to shower with.

I get stress tests once a week, I'm monitored every four hours and have my meals delivered to my bedside.
Things are pretty stable as long as I continue to not bleed!!

Little things I've negotiated with the doctors-- getting to sleep through the night without having them take my vitals, getting permission to walk outside once a day, and getting them to take out my IV.
Test Results.
(Normal Range-- Hemoglobin 12.0-16.0, Hematocrit 36-46%)
May 1-- Hemoglobin 7.8, Hematocrit 24.8%
2 units of blood transfusion
May 3-- Hemoglobin 9.2, Hematocrit 29%

29 weeks 3 days
3.7 lbs  (doesn't that seem big?!!!)

Physically at 29 weeks.
Aside from my sore central line, I feel great.  No contractions, no leaking fluid, no bleeding or spotting.  My back doesn't even hurt.  I feel like a pretty normal pregnant woman and I'm hopeful that the next few weeks will remain uneventful.

Mentally at 29 weeks.
Wow.  Being in the hospital is something else.  It's like a different world here.  I love being able to Skype with my family.  Todd calls me every morning during scripture time and breakfast, and every night during dinner.  A few times it has been really hard for me to watch (especially when I feel like my baby doesn't understand why I'm not home), but I think after a few visits and some Skype singing time together she is starting to understand.

I love being able to negotiate the girls' clothing disputes or listen to leah read a story.  Skype is a blessing.

I've made this hospital room my home with family pictures and a plant and books and movies and little notes like "He is Worth it!" or "34 weeks!" posted all around.  I try to write a To Do list each day... and I stay inactive, but busy.  I don't feel like I'm just wasting my days.  So, that's nice.

Fear, worry and self-pity are not far away... but they are not constant either.  Laying on the operating table while they inserted a central line into my heart was freaky.  I could feel it and it still makes me sick thinking about what they are doing.  Someday I'm going to be laying on that table anticipating a pretty intense surgery.  I have to practice my controlled lamaze breathing just anticipating that day.

Sometimes I lay in bed at night praying that I will be able to stop thinking about surgery and tubes in my heart and preemie babies.

This time in the hospital has given me an interesting life pause.  I'm so grateful for the new perspective I'm gaining.

Life is good.  MY life is good.
I feel happy and blessed and I can't wait to meet my new little baby boy.
Thanks for keeping track of me!!
I hope for a few more boring weeks...
my sweet baby- today 29 weeks, 3 days
 Is there anything in life more worth the sacrifice?!!


Lindsey said...

I think about you every day. My mama-heart reaches out to you and your babies. Your posts make me overwhelmed with gratitude for the life Dave and I have built and been tremendously blessed with. You are in good hands. So is your family. We are sending our daily prayers! And yes--his little hand under his chin is precious!

Trever Plastow said...

He is so beautiful. And yes, that does seem big. Mine was 3 lbs 15 oz at 31 weeks and the doctors and nurses thought he was big. I love your little reminders. They will really help you keep a good perspective. When I would find myself in those dark moments, I would think of my happy place. Adam ondi ahmen believe it or not. Big open fields of green beauty. (The open fields help with the clostrophobic moments too ) I also made plans for the future. I would picture things we could do as a family. I would focus hard on what it would be like when I woke up from surgery alive and getting to hold him in my arms. It really helps to plan on life after surgery. Then focus on enjoying life now, so you can enjoy life then. You have a great perspective and so much faith. You will do great. I always hated when people told me, it will be over before you know it. i can say however, that it really is worth it all. You are always in my thoughts and prayers.

Anonymous said...

You and the little man will be just fine! I had the same condition with organ involvement. discovered during c-section. God will be with you and keep you safe...I'll send some prayers up. Hang in there!

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