Jeremy was due on February 23, 1993, but the doctors decided to deliver him on January 5, 1993, at 33 weeks gestation. This was because mommy was suffering from Pre-eclampsia which escalated into HELLP. Jeremy came into the world weighing 3 lbs. 12 oz. and was 17 1/4 inches in length. To learn more about his early arrival read on.
During the month of June, 1992, mommy and daddy discovered that they were pregnant with me and that I was due to arrive on February 23, 1993. Mommy was a pool manager/lifeguard/examiner, etc. and the doctor advised her to quit her job because she had had one previous miscarriage. So she did and was hoping for a nice smooth pregnancy, unfortunately it didn't turn out that way!
On August 26, 1992, mommy had her first, and not her last, ultrasound. I am on the left hand side of the picture with my back to everyone.
Everything seemed normal. Mommy did not suffer from morning sickness at all. But then everything started to go haywire. The family doctor noticed that mommy's blood pressure was increasing from her normal 120/70 to the 135/80 range. There were traces of protein showing up in urine samples and mommy looked run down. This was around 25/26 weeks gestation. Since the nearest city to mommy and daddy was a 1/2 hour drive, they lived on a farm, the doctor decided to admit mommy to the local hospital.
The admission was mainly for bed rest but the doctor noticed that it was not helping and the blood pressure was still increasing. So he contacted the nearest perinatologist, 2 hours away, and explained the situation.
Mommy and daddy had to head up for an appointment as soon as possible and mommy was placed in the hospital there. She was given another ultrasound which showed that the blood supply to baby was decreasing and the perinatologist prescribe one baby aspirin a day for starters. While in the hospital mommy was given and shown how to use a blood pressure monitor. By this time her blood pressure had been sitting at 140/90. She was also given test strips to test for protein in the urine, which was still at just a trace.
The perinatologist decided to prescribe medication to help lower the blood pressure, "Labetelol". Mommy was released from the hospital on November 27, 1992, but had to make weekly trips into the local hospital for NST, non-stress tests, and ensure that she monitored herself very closely. Every two weeks she returned to the perinatologist, a two hour trip one way, for another ultrasound and for alterations in her medication.
Daddy's boss was very kind in letting daddy take the time off to drive mommy to and from the local hospital and to and from the hospital two hours away. Many times the result of the further trip meant mommy staying in the hospital for a few days. It got so bad that by the time she finally had me, some of the people assumed she worked there since she was around so much!!!
At 29 weeks gestation mommy's blood pressure seemed to be a constant 140/90 but more protein was showing up, from a trace to 30. During one of mommy's stays at the hospital the perinatologist upped her medication dosage and added another kind. Mommy cannot remember the name of that one though. She was instructed to do fetal kick counts on a regular basis and to report any blurred vision, headaches and/or upper abdominal pain.
Once back home again, mommy started to notice her blood pressure rise to 155/115. This was at 31 weeks and the protein had jumped to 100. The medications were losing their effectiveness so into the hospital mommy went again. More ultrasounds, more NSTs and more needed rest.
Mommy spent from December 26 until December 31 in the hospital. The night of December 30 the perinatologist had mommy sign a consent form for an amniocentesis. She signed this at 11:00 pm that evening and at 7:00 am the following day was carted down to ultrasound and had it performed. OUCH is all that comes to mommy's mind when she thinks about it. The perinatologist had mentioned that if the baby's lungs were mature they would deliver the baby that very day. Unfortunately it showed baby was not ready to be born. So once again mommy was given instructions to closely monitor herself and was released from the hospital.
THIS WAS NOT A WISE IDEA!
Once back home, mommy spent all of her time in bed. She was up to do her monitoring and that was about it. On January 3, 1993, some of daddy's friends were down and visiting at a nearby farm. Thinking everything was all right, he headed out to visit and arrived back home around midnight. Mommy was not good.
Her blood pressure was registering at 180/120 and she had headache that felt like an axe was through her brain. She was having bad pains in her stomach, so bad she couldn't stand up. Daddy phoned the hospital two hours away and explained the situation. They said to get mommy to the nearest hospital and get her transported up by ambulance.
Mommy always kept a packed bag. Daddy grabbed it, got the truck and loaded mommy in. Daddy drove the 30 minute drive to the nearest hospital in record time with a stop being made. Half way there mommy had to vomit. She didn't want to mess up the truck so she demanded daddy to pull over and he did just in time.(At a speed of 140 kilometers per hour, it was a little tough for a quick stop) Finally they reached the hospital. Now since it was a small town hospital it was locked. YES LOCKED. They had to buzz to get let in. By this time mommy couldn't even stand up so she sat on the ground outside the hospital doors waiting for them to let them in.
Finally inside daddy explained everything and they took mommy to the emergency room to check her blood pressure. It was now 210/120. The nurses on staff at first believed the machine was broken and insisted on checking it again. Still the same reading. When the doctor on call arrived, mommy was given a shot in the butt, and again vomited. She didn't have a clue what the needle was for but was too sick to ask.
The ambulance attendants loaded her up and a nurse accompanied her and daddy for the two hour ride, which was made much shorter, to the hospital that could handle her situation. Once there she was placed on an intravenous of Magnesium Sulfate.
Wow, what a feeling that was for mommy. She felt like her entire body was on fire. She doesn't recall much after that for a couple of hours as she must have dozed off. Next thing she knew she woke with a start and her hand uncontrollably knocked the nurse's tray flying. The nurse came back in and began a drip of Syntocinon to induce labour as they felt it was the safest way since mommy's blood pressure had dropped.
The first stage of labour lasted 40 minutes and the second stage lasted three minutes. Mom had no epidural as it happened all so quickly. In fact it happened so quickly that the attending physician did not make it into the room on time. The baby was delivered breech by an intern and the nurses.
Here is the medical reports from this point on:
The baby was noted to have bruised skin over buttocks and feet. Apgar scores were noted as 5 at 1 minutes and 7 at 5 minutes. The baby had respiratory distress at birth and once admitted to NICU was intubated and placed on a positive pressure ventilator. Initial blood sugar was low and was corrected by intravenous glucose. Respiratory distress was diagnosed clinically and confirmed radiologically. However, the baby was on low respiratory settings.
Also noted was abdominal distension and x-ray of the abdomen showed large bowel distension. The baby had not passed meconium. On the second day the abdominal distension was relieved partly by gastrografin enema with passage of some meconium plugs. Subsequently follow-up barium examinations showed slow evacuation suggesting possibility of Hirschsprung's disease. Sweat chlorides test for Cystic Fibrosis was done prior to discharge - were normal.
The respiratory distress resolved rapidly and by four days the baby was extubated. Feedings were started on the sixth day and increased as tolerated. At 35 days of age and 38 weeks gestation the baby weighed 2.40 kg and was feeding on breast milk. A complete examination including neurological examination was normal. However, there was some feeding difficulty and it was noted that the baby had sniffles and nasal cultures grew staph. aureus just at the time of discharge. The baby was sent home on Amoxil for five days. At discharge all growth parameters were between -1 and -2 standard deviation.
An ophthalmology consult showed no retinopathy or prematurity. Cranial ultrasound was normal.
On February 9, 1993, Jeremy came home. He weighed in at 5 lbs. 5 oz. He did not have much hair left as most of it was shaved off in order for new veins to be used for his I.V.'s.