Non-Stress Tests, SGA, & Biophysical Profiles – Huh?

25 Jan
So excited to make this a family of four!!!!

…In continuation:

So aside from the fear of pre-term labor, all was going well. I was taking it easy as instructed. My time was spent listening to podcasts; watching movies on instant Netflix; watching cooking vodcasts; reading books and magazines; journaling; playing word games; reading crafting, decorating, music, and cooking blogs; knitting; reading articles on the NPR website; browsing Facebook; and, best of all, spending time with Tucker and Collin. (It may sound like a pretty sweet gig, but believe me, I would have much rather have been able to DO things, like physical things. The body gets so tired and achy just sitting/laying there. And the mind gets foggy. And you feel useless and are so dependent on others. It is NOT fun.)

What came next we were not prepared for. At my routine doctor’s appointment on the 30th, the doctor was alarmed by a smaller than usual measurement of my uterus. It was measuring about 4 weeks off! (Turns out my due date was incorrect though, as I knew all along. We finally decided to go from my first ultrasound due date, as it is more accurate. So in all actuality, I was 32 weeks at the time.) My weight gain high up until this point had been only 15 pounds, and at this appointment, I had dropped down to just 11 pounds. Aside from that, everyone kept telling me how small I was, and rather than feel ‘lucky’ I felt nervous, like something was wrong. But up until this appointment, my doctor brushed aside my concerns. I never got huge with Collin either and gained just 25 pounds, a healthy amount. But this seemed different somehow. And, my gut feeling was right.

The doctor ordered an ultrasound, and the soonest we could get in was January 3rd. The worries definitely set in. At the ultrasound, the technician confirmed her small size. She was weighing only 3 lbs 2 oz. This was less than the 10th percentile. Small for gestational age is what they call it. SGA. The doctor informed us of all of this at our follow-up appointment the morning of January 4th. He was worried. He had us worried. There were some positives: the measurements were symmetrical, her amniotic fluid levels were good, and she did well on her biophysical profile. I also felt good about her movement. She’s an active baby. He scheduled us for another ultrasound in two weeks time to check on her growth. I also had to come in for a non-stress test on the 6th (it went well – responsive) and every week there after until delivery. He took me off of the Procardia. All we had left to do was wait for the ultrasound. Longest two weeks ever.

Tucker and I were definitely affected. Thoughts would slip into worst-case scenario territory, and that made for a sad, scary place to be. For the most part though, we kept positive and convinced our selves that our baby would grow and be healthy. If there wasn’t adequate growth, or if the growth changed to asymmetrical, or if the amniotic fluid level dropped, the doctor was going to induce me. This was an outcome we were most certainly hoping to avoid. It was such a long anxiety filled two weeks as we waited to see how our little girl was doing!!

When the 17th finally rolled around, we got to see our little girl again – pushing her feet up against my uterus, sticking out her tongue, and moving all about. We also got to see that her growth was still symmetrical, amniotic fluid levels were good, and she had gained 9 oz to get to 3 lbs 11 oz. Still less than the 10th percentile, but it was good enough for our doctor to feel reassured about keeping her in there – no induction and a chance to continue to gain weight and make it to term! We felt great relief with this news. It had been such a heavy worry – so anxiety ridden. Ahhh, we really could breathe easier.

This coming Monday, the 31st, I have another ultrasound – two weeks from the last. Hoping – and expecting – more growth. Feeling optimistic!!

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