I was diagnosed with Insulin dependent diabetes in 9/96 at age 28. In August of
I was diagnosed with Insulin dependent diabetes in 9/96 at age 28. In August of 1997, I became pregnant with my first child. The pregnancy went fine, diabetes wise, and I managed on 4-5 shots a day. I saw my perinatologist/OB every 2-3 weeks until week 24, when my blood pressure started increasing, and I began to have significant swelling in my legs and face. The plan was to see my OB every week after that to keep close tabs on my bp and other symptoms. By 26 weeks, I was put on bed rest because I had mild pre-eclampsia, and my OB didn't want to take any unnecessary risks.
At 32 weeks, I was hospitalized because my blood pressure was still high (it reached 170/110 at its highest), but my pre-eclamptic symptoms remained the same, which was fortunate. I was now on total bed rest, and I was taking phenobarbitol, just in case I would go into eclampsia and have a seizure. Fortunately, I was allowed to take a shower, if I felt strong enough for it.
The day I was hospitalized, we had an ultrasound and the baby looked great, no problems. But I had already gained about 55 lbs, and was huge! The increased weight gain was attributed to the pre-eclamptic edema. After being in the hospital less than 36 hours, I had lost 5 pounds of fluid just by using the bathroom.
For the next 4 weeks, I had frequent 24 hour urine tests for protein, to gauge if the pre-eclampsia was progressing, constant blood tests, non-stress tests for the baby, but my symptoms just remained at the mild to moderate stage. My blood pressure remained elevated, but it was lower compared to the readings just before my hospitalization.
It was decided if I could make it to 36 weeks, I would be induced if the baby's lungs were mature. This was great, since I was slowly going nuts in the hospital room, not having any idea when I would get out, or if my symptoms would suddenly worsen and something would happen to me and the baby.
My blood sugars were kept very low during the entire pregnancy, so at 36 wks, 3 days, I had an amnio to test for lung maturity, and that evening, the results showed the baby's lungs were mature. We were ready to induce labor. At 6:30 p.m., a pitocin drip was started for induction and I was given a mild sedative to help me sleep. At 4 a.m., the drip was increased, and every hour after that until my water broke at 10:30 a.m. At 3:09 p.m., April 1, 1998, after 5 pushes, Lily Helena was born at weighing in at 6 lbs. 4 oz and 19 3/4 inches long. She was healthy, beautiful and perfect. She was 4 weeks early, but she showed no effects from the pre-eclampsia. Lily did not have to stay in the NICU, even though she was 4 weeks early.
Before I became pregnant with my second daughter in 2000, my OB and I discussed strategy to try to stave off pre-eclampsia in another pregnancy as I had a increased chance of having it again. So it was decided I would take an 81 mg. aspirin every day as soon as I found out I was pregnant.
The aspirin theory worked for the pre-eclampsia, but my blood pressure started rising at about week 31 or so. It got to 150/90, which was much better than
what I had with Lily. I was tired, but I felt much better than I did with my 1st pregnancy. I took the aspirin every day until 4 days before Caroline was born. I had no symptoms of pre-eclampsia at all in this pregnancy, which was surprising for just taking a baby aspirin every day.
At 38 weeks, my bp had not changed, remaining at 150/90, so it was decided since we got to 38 weeks, close enough to term, we might as well induce. A biophysical profile was performed on Caroline and
she looked wonderful. The estimated her weight to be about 6 lbs. 7 oz. We decided to start inducing on 4/4/01 at midnight. The pitocin was started by 1 a.m., and I was again given a sedative to help me
My water broke again at 10:30 a.m. but my bp was low throughout the entire labor. My OB told me if it would have been like that at my last check-up, we would have gone another week. I had no explanation why my bp was low during labor.
On April 5, 2001, 3:45 p.m., Caroline Juliet was born, weighing 7 lbs. 7 oz, 21 inches long and howling like a banshee. She was healthy, beautiful and vocal as could be.
I attribute my excellent outcomes in both pregnancies to my wonderful OB. He was on top of everything and never dismissed a worry, no matter how silly it might have seemed. I'm not sure my pregnancies would have been as successful had I been with another OB. I'm very blessed.
Ethan will be turning 3 at the end of this month (October). The month of October always brings up some scary memories and emotions for me... I never thought I would have a difficult pregnancy or labor. After all...