Csection brought forward?

(15 Posts)
Anaisa Sat 17-Nov-12 09:42:36

Hi everyone, I'm 37 weeks tomorrow and have been in hospital for the last few days. Originally the only concern was the blood pressure playing up as I had pre eclampsia with my DS 4 years ago. This time it is not pe yet, although some indicators are showing that it might still turn into it. However, the main concern now is my racing pulse (115-120 resting) as they are now suspecting there might be a clot on my lungs. That's where the fun begins as the only way to confirm this is to give me a nuclear scan which I am really not keen on. It involves injecting a radioactive solution into my veins so the baby will be exposed to some degree of radiation even though they say its very small. Surely it would be better to have the baby out safely and then do whatever is necessary to me rather than both of us? But of course the doctors are insisting 37 weeks is too early. What do I do? Trust their judgement? But it's not their baby and the risks are not really known... I am so upset.

Anaisa Sat 17-Nov-12 09:51:12

Sorry, just to add to an extremely long post - my parents are both doctors abroad, they've shown my test results(EKG, bloods etc) to a consultant there who said nothing looks critical as far as clots go and he would not recommend the procedure but would deliver the baby to avoid pre eclampsia developing. An I wrong in thinking 37 weeks is safe enough for the baby? Is there really such a need to expose the little one to all sorts of risks just to get him to full term?

StrawberriesTasteLikeLipsDo Sat 17-Nov-12 10:03:44

My routine section is scheduled for 37+6! with a growth scan before the section id think that a slightly early section would be safer than radiation!

Floralnomad Sat 17-Nov-12 10:07:05

What are your oxygen saturation readings like ? I'm not a medical expert but c sections are normally done at 38 weeks so I wouldn't have thought a week early would have been much of an issue . I think I'd want the baby out before having the tests . Good luck !

mmmmsleep Sat 17-Nov-12 10:29:26

Hi. What a tricky situation you're in. I would say it's very difficult for any dr to comment on what to do without seeing you. Routine cs are now done at 39 weeks due to slight increase in breathing problems for baby before that. However this is brought forward for medical reasons if the small risk of breathing problems is outweighed by risks faced due to pre eclampsia or other problems. nuclear medicine scans to investigate for clots in the lung have been done for a very long time and again it's a risk vs benefits equation. Unfortunately clots in the lung are very serious and can kill. They may want to know if you have a clot before the section as blood thinning medicine to treat the clot would make controlling bleeding during surgery harder so putting you at greater risk which if not necessary they could avoid.

Could you ask for a second opinion from a consultant to help and ask them to explain their pros and cons list.

Hope that helps. Totally get your worries about baby and radiation but perhaps get them to explain it compared with amount of radiation we are exposed to on a long haul flight and that can make it seem less scary.

Best of luck and hope your bp behaves and this all ends up being a false alarm. Not long now until you get to cuddle your baby!

Anaisa Sat 17-Nov-12 10:54:11

Just had another visit from a registrar who confirmed that I have to have the vq scan on mon. They are not happy to operate not knowing for sure if there is a clot or not and as he put it the risk to the baby is small whilst the risk of death for the mother is high so they have to weigh up pros and cons. Basically it looks like I have no choice but expose my unborn baby to the risk of potentially developing cancer. Thank you everyone for your support! At least talking about it makes it a tiny bit better blush

mmmmsleep Sat 17-Nov-12 12:07:39

Hi have just looked up the figures for you.absorption of radiation exposure is measured in rads or grays. the exposure to unborn child during a vq scan is 50mrads. The exposure to radiation from background radiation that we are all exposed to from the ground etc in 1 year is 300mrads. Therefore the additional exposure to radiation that your baby has by having the vq scan is the same as he/she will be exposed to in 2 months. We all go on flights, trips to cornwall etc and don't think about the background radiation exposure. In the grand scheme of things your baby is being exposed to a very very small amount of radiation that is not thought from all the evidence available to increase their cancer risks.

Hope the result is negative for you and you can just proceed as normal with your section.

Hope the above helps put your mind at rest re baby's risks. Best of luck

hazeyjane Sat 17-Nov-12 12:19:55

It is a horrible situation to be in, but the increased risk of breathing problems when born even a week early are very real. Ds was born at 39 weeks and was 8lb 9oz, but had respiratory distress syndrome. His consultant said that he didn't look 'ready' to be born (my previous dcs were born at 42 weeks). He was in nicu, on cpap, tube fed, on very strong antibiotics and had his chest xrayed within hours of being born.

I can understand the fear you must have over the risks of radiation, but they must be very small and outweighed by the risks to you, and the potential risks to the baby of being born at 37 weeks, if the consultants are giving you the dvice they are.

Good luck.

RedToothbrush Sat 17-Nov-12 12:22:42

xkcd.com/radiation/

Note where lowest one year dose clearly linked to increased cancer risk is.

The trouble is risk is so badly presented to us, ESPECIALLY when the words cancer and radiation is used, so we don't really properly understand the actual risk (how likely it is overall) compared to increased risk (how much increase there is from normal conditions under certain circumstances). We are so afraid of those words we often forget to properly look at the right information (actual risk).

When you compare the two, having a baby early carries FAR more risk and there is significant evidence to suggest that having one before 39 weeks without a very solid medical reason is unwise.

Anaisa Sat 17-Nov-12 15:12:24

Mmmmmsleep - thank you so much for looking up the figures and putting things into perspective, I am feeling a bit calmer now. I am keeping my fingers crossed for monday, hopefully will get the all clear.

Hazeyjane - I am sorry to hear you had such a tough time. My DS was born at 35 weeks but was absolutely fine and didn't need any help breathing/feeding so I suppose that is giving me a false sense of security. But you are of course right, not everybody is as lucky as we were and we do have to keep that in mind.

RedToothbrush - you hit the nail on the head, the word radiation just sets off the panic alarm, especially when one is not an expert in this field.

Thank you so much again to everyone, I will keep you posted on how I get on next week!

mmmmsleep Mon 19-Nov-12 18:31:32

Hope scan went ok x

Smallgreenone Mon 19-Nov-12 18:32:35

I had a cs at 36+6 baby was absolutely perfect and came out crying. On obs every two hours for his first 12 hours and then signed off. I don't think they like to do them so early, mine was originally scheduled for 38 weeks but bought forward due to waters going however if the risk to baby staying inside is greater than being born they will take baby out. In this case I really wouldn't worry as if the doctors had any concern about the radiation then they'd do the cs now. Sorry it's such a worry for you, hope all is well and you have your lo in your arms soon.

Anaisa Mon 19-Nov-12 19:54:13

Just came back from the scan and am nervously waiting for the results. Hopefully they won't take too long blush. Only had the solution injected into the vein part done, but not the breathing in gas part to reduce the risk to the baby. This might still need to be done depending on the results of the first part. Hopefully will have some more news tonight or first thing tomorrow.

Anaisa Tue 20-Nov-12 21:52:39

Just a quick update - the results of yesterday's scan were inconclusive so I still ended up going for the second part of the scan, which involved inhaling some tasteless and odourless gas. Finally after what seemed a very long wait I was given the all clear. Thank you again to everyone for your re-assurance! I am back home with a c section scheduled for in less than 2 weeks. Can't wait to meet the little one!

mmmmsleep Wed 21-Nov-12 17:18:30

That's great news! Good luck for the rest of the pregnancy. X

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