Possible block in our baby’s heart

by Kathy on December 23, 2007 · 2 comments

in CHD, FET #1, Molly, Sean

Good morning! Thank you, as always, for your comments, emails, positive thoughts, sticky vibes and prayers.

I would have posted last night, however we didn’t get home from the ER until after 1:00 a.m. and we were so tired, we went straight to bed.

The blood flow yesterday afternoon didn’t end up being that significant. It had slowed down by the time we were leaving for the ER and stopped almost completely soon after we got there. We had to wait a good 2 1/2 hours before we got a room. Once in the room a doctor did a pelvic exam and we were relieved to find out that my cervix was closed. She did see a little blood at that time but not much.

Next we waited to be brought to radiology for an ultrasound. Being a weekend, they didn’t have someone available who could come and do it in our room. At the ultrasound our baby was still alive and moving around, which we were very happy about. Unfortunately, once again it’s heart beat was irregular and the rate was in the 60s (as it had been on Monday, but not on Thursday or any of the other three ultrasounds we have had during this pregnancy).

After the ultrasound we didn’t know what to think and didn’t get to debrief with a doctor about it for another 1 1/2 hours. The waiting was frustrating, but we knew we were in the ER and not necessarily any one’s first priority. When we did get to talk with the ER doctor, she explained that when the heart rate is this low at 6 – 8 weeks pregnant, it is more often than not fatal. However, she explained that the further along you are (we are 13 weeks), the stronger and more developed the baby and the better the chance that something can be done. For one thing, the baby was still measuring where it should be developmentally and thus the heart rate can’t be that low all the time.

When our OB who was on call checked in, we talked to her on the ER doctor’s phone, we were very impressed with her approach to all of this. She had consulted with the doctor we met with after our u/s on Thursday (who seems to be more a specialist). He had recommended that while we were there that they take more blood from me and do a work up, checking for some dieseases that can cause a woman’s blood to have antibodies that can cause a baby’s heart to have blockage, which in turn can then cause the irregularity and low heart rate. If they can rule out and/or determine anything from the test results they might or might not be able to do anything. They even explained that depending on how long the baby survives, they can even do things like surgery to put in a pacemaker. But our understanding is that it is still too early for measures like that, being only 13 weeks.

They also had me get a Rhogam shot, since my blood is A – (Rh -). I have always had them after my pregnancy losses, during my pregnancy with Sean (around 29 weeks) and then after he was born, since he was A +. But apparently since I have had some bleeding, they like to do it as another precaution in these situations. By the time the told us about the Rhogam shot, it was around 9:30 p.m. They said after I received it, we could go home. We were excited and thought it wouldn’t be long now. Apparently there was some mix up with the hospital’s pharmacy in placing the order for the Rhogam shot, but we didn’t get it until almost 12:45 a.m. The waiting was annoying, especially for Bob who was sitting in a chair. I was more comfortable in the bed in the room, but still ready to go home. The nurses and staff were very apologetic, but we still don’t exactly understand what the hold up was. Anyway, I finally got the injection, they went over my discharge papers and then we were free to go, just over 10 1/2 hours after we arrived. We expected our visit at the ER to take awhile, but not quite that long.

I am on strict bed rest until tomorrow morning, at which point Bob and I will report to our OB’s office when they open at 9:00 a.m. What a way to begin our Christmas Eve, eh? But seriously, we are very impressed overall with how our OB is handling all of this. They should have the blood test results Monday morning from the work up last night. We are pretty sure there will be another ultrasound Monday and then we’ll take it from there. Our OB and the ER doctor explained that it could still go either way.

We aren’t so much sad anymore, as just concerned and waiting to see what happens. This is definitely an exercise in living life one day at a time. We are trying our best to make this Christmas the best we can for Sean. We had a family party last night that we all were suppose to go to. Bob’s parents took Sean, which we were happy about, as he loves to spend time with his cousins. They also kept him overnight, since we were at the ER so late. Bob has gone to pick him up and bring him home. We have decided to tell Sean today that our baby is sick. We will answer any questions he may have related to that. We just feel we can’t continue to not tell him that anything is wrong with all the doctors appointments we keep having and if our baby doesn’t make it, it will almost be easier to explain to him, if he knows something wasn’t right with the baby beforehand.

So that’s all we know. I am not sure what to think about all of this. We continue to hope and pray for the best for our baby. Our ER doctor is also a pediatrician and she told us she did know of success stories of babies having heart problems as early as 13 weeks and making it full term and going on to have a healthy and normal life. But we understand that isn’t necessarily going to happen in our case.

Thank you for your continued support, encouragement, positive thoughts and prayers! We haven’t given up hope. I will check in at some point on Monday, after our appointment, if not before.

On the eve of Christmas Eve, I wish you all wonderful holiday celebrations and time with your families and friends in the days to come. Take care and may God bless you and yours.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 SommerNyte December 23, 2007 at 10:53 am

Kathy ~ I am so sorry you are going through all of this. (((hugs))) I am glad they knew to give you the Rhogam — I didn’t get mine until I had been bleeding for 3 weeks and I had to ask for it! I was so mad when I learned I should have had it right away, but thankfully, everything is OK. I pray all will be well with you and your baby as well. Hang in there.


2 Katie December 23, 2007 at 6:26 pm

Still praying for a happy outcome to all of this. It sounds as if you have a very dedicated OB. I can’t imagine how tough this is on you, but you seem to be handling it as well as can be expected. I will be checking in with you.


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