Oh Kurt, how awful for you guys!
It is my understanding that low fluid can be caused by three different things:
1. premature rupture of membranes (aka PROM) which is more like leaking (which I suspect is what's causing your wife's problem)
2. problems with the baby- like kidneys that don't work
3. problems with mom- like hypertension or lupus- which influence how much blood reaches the placenta
The percentages of how the baby will do often depends on what's causing the problem. My cousin's membranes leaked but with bedrest and LOTS of fluid intake, they sealed back up. I had low fluid from hypertension, and bedrest and fluid didn't really help, but then again, I didn't drop down to nothing until near term.
They have a amniotic fluid disorder bulletin board at Babycenter and the oligo moderator- Roberta- is a sweetheart. The nicest person you'd ever want to talk to. I'm sure you'll find people who have experienced the same thing, who can give you advice there. I know they helped me! They have some ladies there who have managed to amaze the doctors with how well they did.
In the meantime, hang in there! I've heard that gatorade does wonders for helping replenish fluid, especially with PROM. It's worth a try, anyway! I would check with the doctor and ask what he or she thinks is causing the problem. If it's leaky fluid, if you search for PROM, I'll bet you'll find a wealth of information. Take care and I'll be thinking about you guys.
Allie 5-13-98 (35 weeks-pre-e)
Baby Camille 4-17-03 (36 weeks- htn and oligo)