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My sister is on bedrest - update post #39, she had the baby!

PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
My sister is 23 weeks pregnant (she was exactly 20 weeks behind me when I was pregnant) and has been put on bedrest. She has a full placenta previa, has had cramping at various times through pregnancy, and was put on bedrest at 22 weeks due to bleeding. They took her out of work (she's an ICU nurse), and said that when she's not actively bleeding she can do things as long as it's nothing strenuous, but if she's actively bleeding it's bed or couch and only up for the bathroom. Apparently she had to go in for monitoring the other night because she was having contractions every 10 minutes and more mild bleeding, but they sent her home. She's been having more contractions but they're not always regular. The short-term goal is to make it to 24 weeks (next week on Wedndesday), when the baby/fetus could be viable outside the womb. Obviously, she doesn't want to deliver that early though. If she makes it, they will schedule a C-section for 37 weeks. She had a section with my nephew too (age 4.5) because he was breech.

Anyway, my sister either has the worst luck with medical stuff or is a hypochondriac, or a drama queen. I'm tempted to say it's all of the above. Obviously she can't fake a previa or bleeding, and her contractions did register on the uterine monitor, but I wouldn't be surprised if she's making a bigger deal about some symptoms than other women would.

I wish I could help her out a bit more while she's on bedrest, but I've got a newborn myself (plus my 2-year-old). My nephew goes to preschool and before/after care, so she doesn't have to take care of him during the day. Her husband normally travels a lot for work but has been trying to only take local cases so he can stay in town. I've offered to bring over dinner, and will probably try to do so once a week until the baby's born (and a few weeks after as needed).
Faith, 3Aish redhead
Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
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Comments

  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Posts: 31,258Registered Users
    Lots of women seem to love the pregnancy bedrest thing...they probably love the attention of being "at risk" or "sick". There's no real medical benefits to bedrest either...neither fetal or maternal outcomes are significantly improved with bedrest. There are significant risk to the woman though. Bloodclots from inactivity are potentially deadly. You would think your sister, being an ICU nurse, would have seen a fair amount of deaths from bloodclots and pulmonary embolisms in her patients and wouldn't want to risk that herself. But...I have found that nurses (and female OB's) are probably the most compliant OB patients, and seem to go for every intervention and gizmo available. It's the medical mindset...they think doctors can fix everything.

    I wish her well. I hope she goes a lot longer than 24 weeks.
  • ruralcurlsruralcurls Posts: 2,574Registered Users
    I am sorry about your sister. I also hope she makes it much farther than 24 weeks.

    I think it is really nice of you to make her dinner once a week.
    But...I have found that nurses (and female OB's) are probably the most compliant OB patients, and seem to go for every intervention and gizmo available. It's the medical mindset...they think doctors can fix everything.

    This describes my mother perfectly.
  • DarkAngelDarkAngel Posts: 2,671Registered Users
    I questioned my peri about bedrest because I'd read it didn't improve outcomes in most situations. He agreed but wanted me to continue anyway so I could listen to my body without distractions.

    Taking food to her will be greatly appreciated. Maybe a few books as well. Fluff though. I found that the medicine to control contractions made it hard for me to focus on anything complex.
    image.php?type=2&o=5&c=1&date=2009-10-07&babyname=Sebastian

    "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -- Theodor Seuss Geisel
  • PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
    Thanks for the replies. RCW, I was really interested to hear your opinion on this. My sister has always been a listen-to-the-doctor-without-really-researching-or-thinking-for-herself type. And while I'm sure she doesn't enjoy being on bedrest, I know she enjoys the attention that comes along with it. To be fair, though, most women wouldn't think to second-guess their doctor if they were put on bedrest.
    Faith, 3Aish redhead
    Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Posts: 31,258Registered Users
    DarkAngel wrote: »
    I questioned my peri about bedrest because I'd read it didn't improve outcomes in most situations. He agreed but wanted me to continue anyway so I could listen to my body without distractions.


    That's a good line. Sounds a lot better than you're-less-likely-to-sue-me.

    And that's not to disparage you. Really. I understand women are scared when complications develop during pregnancy. And I will agree that bedrest might help a very few women/babies. But OB's know that bedrest is way overprescribed and puts women at significant risk for little-to-no benefit, but they keep prescribing it anyway...because they're afraid not to. It's become standard-of-care, without evidence to back it up, and OB's know they will get sued if something goes wrong and they didn't adhere strictly to standard-of-care. The first thing a lawyer is going to say is "well, why wasn't she put on bedrest, that's standard of care", and there goes their malpractice insurance premiums through the roof.
  • PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
    RCW, since I know she'll adhere to bedrest because her doctor said so, is there anything I can suggest my sister do to reduce the risk of complications?
    Faith, 3Aish redhead
    Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Posts: 31,258Registered Users
    PixieCurl wrote: »
    RCW, since I know she'll adhere to bedrest because her doctor said so, is there anything I can suggest my sister do to reduce the risk of complications?


    She needs to encourage venous blood return in her legs. Pumping her ankles periodically can help. She knows this. And she should stay well hydrated...which will enable many trips to the bathroom, which also helps venous return.

    It's counter-intuitive, because you would think that low/no activity would increase weight gain, but women on bedrest during pregnancy tend to have low weight gain, so she needs to eat well.
  • PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
    Thanks, I'll pass that info along to her.
    Faith, 3Aish redhead
    Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
  • DarkAngelDarkAngel Posts: 2,671Registered Users
    DarkAngel wrote: »
    I questioned my peri about bedrest because I'd read it didn't improve outcomes in most situations. He agreed but wanted me to continue anyway so I could listen to my body without distractions.


    That's a good line. Sounds a lot better than you're-less-likely-to-sue-me.

    And that's not to disparage you. Really. I understand women are scared when complications develop during pregnancy. And I will agree that bedrest might help a very few women/babies. But OB's know that bedrest is way overprescribed and puts women at significant risk for little-to-no benefit, but they keep prescribing it anyway...because they're afraid not to. It's become standard-of-care, without evidence to back it up, and OB's know they will get sued if something goes wrong and they didn't adhere strictly to standard-of-care. The first thing a lawyer is going to say is "well, why wasn't she put on bedrest, that's standard of care", and there goes their malpractice insurance premiums through the roof.

    I'm an attorney. Almost everything my doctors do is lessen the impact if I decide to sue. :)

    My bedrest wasn't strict but it did keep me out of court (read: high stress) for a few weeks which very likely did help.
    image.php?type=2&o=5&c=1&date=2009-10-07&babyname=Sebastian

    "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -- Theodor Seuss Geisel
  • kimberly jkimberly j Posts: 153Registered Users
    As someone who is on week 17 of bedrest with my second pregnancy, I beg to differ that bedrest does not have an impact. I was on bedrest for 12 weeks with my first as well and delivered her at 39 weeks. I will be 36 weeks tomorrow and believe that without this intervention I would have lost my baby (even after having a rescue cerclage placed).

    Now, every situation is different....each & every one. But, not all medical intervention is bad. Not all women are attention seeking in this realm (your sister might be, I don't know her). If you're faced with potentially losing your baby, you'll think LONG & HARD about your options and would do most anything to ensure their safe arrival. Does that mean you go into the process ignorant and not try to educate yourself - heck no. But if a woman trusts her doctor (which she should!) then that's what matters.

    I've been wearing anti-embolism stockings while on bedrest. I'd do daily ankle rolls & leg stretches, but obviously being immobile is harsh on your body. My restrictions have become less strict in recent weeks because of the gestational age we've reached, however up until about 32 weeks I was only getting up to use the restroom & shower every few days. Plus I had weekly appointments.

    Obviously she should stay well hydrated & eat well during this time, but she should be doing that while pregnant anyway. She should keep in mind that the inactivity may have an effect on her gastrointestinal functions & she may need a little help in the bowel movement department. Eating well & staying hydrated will help this, but she may need stool softeners or something of that nature to assist.

    Best of luck to your sister. I hope she makes it full-term and these complications go away.
  • iris427iris427 Posts: 6,002Registered Users
    kimberly j wrote: »
    As someone who is on week 17 of bedrest with my second pregnancy, I beg to differ that bedrest does not have an impact. I was on bedrest for 12 weeks with my first as well and delivered her at 39 weeks. I will be 36 weeks tomorrow and believe that without this intervention I would have lost my baby (even after having a rescue cerclage placed).

    Now, every situation is different....each & every one. But, not all medical intervention is bad. Not all women are attention seeking in this realm (your sister might be, I don't know her). If you're faced with potentially losing your baby, you'll think LONG & HARD about your options and would do most anything to ensure their safe arrival. Does that mean you go into the process ignorant and not try to educate yourself - heck no. But if a woman trusts her doctor (which she should!) then that's what matters.
    .

    I don't think anyone on here would say that "all medical intervention is bad." But when used inappropriately, medical interventions can and do cause harm to mothers and their babies. There is a lot of evidence to back this up. Yes, women should be able to trust their doctors but the sad truth is that a lot--a LOT--of doctors don't practice evidence-based medicine and have to balance the medical needs of their clients with protecting themselves from malpractice, which often means that the patient's needs may come second.

    Pixie, I hope things turn out well for your sister and her child.
    3027585431_55b6195e50_s.jpg3028374752_0df4d81a1b_s.jpg3028422696_8dcef38baa_s.jpg
    TickerTicker.aspx?&TT=bdy&TT1=bdy&CL=29&CT=&CG=F&O=m_nestbirds&T=t_b14&D=20080913&M1=&D1=2009&T2=&T1=Baby+Iris&CC=0&CO=&step=5&radio=A
  • kimberly jkimberly j Posts: 153Registered Users
    iris427 wrote: »
    kimberly j wrote: »
    As someone who is on week 17 of bedrest with my second pregnancy, I beg to differ that bedrest does not have an impact. I was on bedrest for 12 weeks with my first as well and delivered her at 39 weeks. I will be 36 weeks tomorrow and believe that without this intervention I would have lost my baby (even after having a rescue cerclage placed).

    Now, every situation is different....each & every one. But, not all medical intervention is bad. Not all women are attention seeking in this realm (your sister might be, I don't know her). If you're faced with potentially losing your baby, you'll think LONG & HARD about your options and would do most anything to ensure their safe arrival. Does that mean you go into the process ignorant and not try to educate yourself - heck no. But if a woman trusts her doctor (which she should!) then that's what matters.
    .

    I don't think anyone on here would say that "all medical intervention is bad." But when used inappropriately, medical interventions can and do cause harm to mothers and their babies. There is a lot of evidence to back this up. Yes, women should be able to trust their doctors but the sad truth is that a lot--a LOT--of doctors don't practice evidence-based medicine and have to balance the medical needs of their clients with protecting themselves from malpractice, which often means that the patient's needs may come second.

    Pixie, I hope things turn out well for your sister and her child.

    Sure, there are doctors who aren't putting the needs of their patients first, which leads to horrible outcomes at times, I totally agree with that. Medical care is about protecting yourself and educating yourself, but if you don't have a physician that is trustworthy of providing sound care then you absolutely should seek alternate care.

    Aside from that, Pixie's sister needs to educate herself on the diagnosis she's been given and only she can determine if the recommended course of treatment of bedrest is necessary for her. Having the support of family and friends, as Pixie is providing, is crucial and she's lucky to have a sister that is concerned.
  • iris427iris427 Posts: 6,002Registered Users
    kimberly j wrote: »
    iris427 wrote: »
    kimberly j wrote: »
    As someone who is on week 17 of bedrest with my second pregnancy, I beg to differ that bedrest does not have an impact. I was on bedrest for 12 weeks with my first as well and delivered her at 39 weeks. I will be 36 weeks tomorrow and believe that without this intervention I would have lost my baby (even after having a rescue cerclage placed).

    Now, every situation is different....each & every one. But, not all medical intervention is bad. Not all women are attention seeking in this realm (your sister might be, I don't know her). If you're faced with potentially losing your baby, you'll think LONG & HARD about your options and would do most anything to ensure their safe arrival. Does that mean you go into the process ignorant and not try to educate yourself - heck no. But if a woman trusts her doctor (which she should!) then that's what matters.
    .

    I don't think anyone on here would say that "all medical intervention is bad." But when used inappropriately, medical interventions can and do cause harm to mothers and their babies. There is a lot of evidence to back this up. Yes, women should be able to trust their doctors but the sad truth is that a lot--a LOT--of doctors don't practice evidence-based medicine and have to balance the medical needs of their clients with protecting themselves from malpractice, which often means that the patient's needs may come second.

    Pixie, I hope things turn out well for your sister and her child.

    Sure, there are doctors who aren't putting the needs of their patients first, which leads to horrible outcomes at times, I totally agree with that. Medical care is about protecting yourself and educating yourself, but if you don't have a physician that is trustworthy of providing sound care then you absolutely should seek alternate care.

    I agree completely. Unfortunately, it can be hard to tell if your provider is trustworthy or not. No one tells you "This isn't in your best interest, but I don't want to get sued so I'm going to push you to have a cesarean/induction/bedrest/et cetera." They have valid sounding medical reasons, that they themselves might even believe. I don't think doctors are evil or out to get their patients. It can just be really hard to find good care.

    Like you said, that's why it's so important to educate yourself about your situation.
    3027585431_55b6195e50_s.jpg3028374752_0df4d81a1b_s.jpg3028422696_8dcef38baa_s.jpg
    TickerTicker.aspx?&TT=bdy&TT1=bdy&CL=29&CT=&CG=F&O=m_nestbirds&T=t_b14&D=20080913&M1=&D1=2009&T2=&T1=Baby+Iris&CC=0&CO=&step=5&radio=A
  • StarmieStarmie Posts: 6,677Registered Users Curl Dabbler
    I had a grade 4 placenta praevia with my second son and would agree with kimberleyj in that you you do think very long and hard when you're at very real risk of losing your baby (and your own life) so please don't think your sister's making a bigger deal of it than it should be. I was terrified.
    That said, I'm a nurse too and worked until I was 33 weeks, I was told that although bedrest was what they used to recommend it wasn't the case now and that it really didn't make any difference in the long run. Everyone's case is different though and I didn't have any contractions or cramping at any stage and didn't have a bleed until I was 35 weeks (and what a bleed, if I wasn't terrified before I was after that).
    I don't really have any advice, just a pov from someone who's been there.
    3b in South Australia.
  • PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
    So now she's in the hospital. Apparently she was having cramping and contractions so they told her to come in to be monitored. Baby is doing fine and the uterine monitor is in fact showing contractions, so I know she's not faking those. They had the NICU team come talk to her just in case, and they are going to do steroids. She'll be 24 weeks tomorrow and they're keeping her at least 48 hours, until Thursday. Their new short-term goal is to get her to 27/28 weeks.
    Faith, 3Aish redhead
    Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
  • geekygeeky Posts: 4,995Registered Users
    I'll be keeping her in my thoughts.
    To Trenell, MizKerri and geeky:
    I pray none of you ever has to live in a communist state.

    Geeky is my hero. She's the true badass. The badass who doesn't even need to be a badass. There aren't enough O's in cool to describe her.
  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Posts: 31,258Registered Users
    I hope baby stays in a while longer. Let us know how she is.
  • ruralcurlsruralcurls Posts: 2,574Registered Users
    I am sorry to hear that. I hope baby stays in till new goal.
  • medussamedussa Posts: 12,993Registered Users
    I hope he/she stays in a bit longer. How is your sister doing emotionally?
  • PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
    medussa wrote: »
    How is your sister doing emotionally?

    As expected, I guess. My mom spent the night at the hospital with her last night because my BIL had to travel for work (don't get me started on that one...) and when I spoke to her this morning, she said that the neonatalogist (sp?) told my sister that if the baby needs to be delivered before they've completed the steroids, the baby has a 50/50 chance of even making it out of the delivery room. But when I spoke to my sister earlier in the day, I asked her under what circumstances they would want to deliver this early and she said if she starts losing a lot of blood, which at this point, I don't think she's been bleeding at all. They've also been giving her mag sulfate to try to stop the contractions.
    Faith, 3Aish redhead
    Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
  • medussamedussa Posts: 12,993Registered Users
    How scary for everyone. I hope everything turns out okay.
  • StarmieStarmie Posts: 6,677Registered Users Curl Dabbler
    Hope she's ok. I remember relaxing considerably when I got to 28 weeks as in my head, that was when the baby was viable. I hope they can get the contractions under control so the baby can stay put as long as possible. It's good there's no bleeding yet though with me they managed to stop the bleed I had and I lasted another week anyway. Sending positive thoughts her way.
    3b in South Australia.
  • iris427iris427 Posts: 6,002Registered Users
    Pixie, my best wishes to your sister. I hope they can keep that baby in for a bit more.
    3027585431_55b6195e50_s.jpg3028374752_0df4d81a1b_s.jpg3028422696_8dcef38baa_s.jpg
    TickerTicker.aspx?&TT=bdy&TT1=bdy&CL=29&CT=&CG=F&O=m_nestbirds&T=t_b14&D=20080913&M1=&D1=2009&T2=&T1=Baby+Iris&CC=0&CO=&step=5&radio=A
  • marielle448marielle448 Posts: 1,823Registered Users
    Wow Pixie. Praying the baby stays put a while longer, I know you and your family have got to be quite worried.
  • PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
    Just wanted to update again that she's still in the hospital. She's been having regular contractions - they were even every 3-5 minutes the other day. They've been giving her something to try to stop the contractions. Luckily, though, the contractions aren't doing anything - her doctor has said strictly no vaginal exams but ultrasounds show that she's not dilating or anything.
    Faith, 3Aish redhead
    Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
  • FieryCurlsFieryCurls Posts: 2,904Registered Users
    PixieCurl wrote: »
    Just wanted to update again that she's still in the hospital. She's been having regular contractions - they were even every 3-5 minutes the other day. They've been giving her something to try to stop the contractions. Luckily, though, the contractions aren't doing anything - her doctor has said strictly no vaginal exams but ultrasounds show that she's not dilating or anything.

    Is it Terbutaline or Procardia?

    I hope he stays in there a little while longer.
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  • DarkAngelDarkAngel Posts: 2,671Registered Users
    PixieCurl wrote: »
    Just wanted to update again that she's still in the hospital. She's been having regular contractions - they were even every 3-5 minutes the other day. They've been giving her something to try to stop the contractions. Luckily, though, the contractions aren't doing anything - her doctor has said strictly no vaginal exams but ultrasounds show that she's not dilating or anything.

    I hope he continues to stay put. I took both medicines that Fiery Curls mentioned and they made me jittery and unable to focus. Your sister might enjoy some fun items that don't take real concentration. Maybe magazines and DVDs. I didn't read much because I couldn't stay focused.

    My contractions did not cause cervical change either once I was medicated. I wonder if some people just have angry uteruses (uterii?).
    image.php?type=2&o=5&c=1&date=2009-10-07&babyname=Sebastian

    "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -- Theodor Seuss Geisel
  • FieryCurlsFieryCurls Posts: 2,904Registered Users
    DarkAngel wrote: »
    PixieCurl wrote: »
    Just wanted to update again that she's still in the hospital. She's been having regular contractions - they were even every 3-5 minutes the other day. They've been giving her something to try to stop the contractions. Luckily, though, the contractions aren't doing anything - her doctor has said strictly no vaginal exams but ultrasounds show that she's not dilating or anything.

    I hope he continues to stay put. I took both medicines that Fiery Curls mentioned and they made me jittery and unable to focus. Your sister might enjoy some fun items that don't take real concentration. Maybe magazines and DVDs. I didn't read much because I couldn't stay focused.

    My contractions did not cause cervical change either once I was medicated. I wonder if some people just have angry uteruses (uterii?).

    I was on one of those two medications from weeks 18-36. I was jittery, couldn't focus, my heart would just race, my husband said I was mean, etc.

    My contractions did cause cervical change. I had strict bedrest, hospital stays, and I went into labor at 36 weeks.
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  • PixieCurlPixieCurl Posts: 5,656Registered Users
    Not sure what medication she's on to stop the contractions. She's now 26 weeks and the plan is to schedule a C-section for 37 weeks if she makes it that far. They told her that unless she can go about 3 days straight without regular contractions, they want to keep her in the hospital. So it seems she'll probably be there for quite a while, possibly until she delivers.

    It's been hard because I haven't been able to visit her - my whole family was sick for a couple weeks and the baby had RSV which would be really bad to expose her/her baby to if she ends up delivering any time soon. We're mostly better now and my doctor said we could go visit her once Abram and I are 100% symptom-free, so possibly tomorrow. I plan to bring her a bunch of magazines because she must be so bored.
    Faith, 3Aish redhead
    Mama to two wild superheroes and a curly-headed baby boy :love5:
  • geekygeeky Posts: 4,995Registered Users
    More vibes for her
    To Trenell, MizKerri and geeky:
    I pray none of you ever has to live in a communist state.

    Geeky is my hero. She's the true badass. The badass who doesn't even need to be a badass. There aren't enough O's in cool to describe her.
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