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32 weeks - preterm labour experiences?

(40 Posts)
SayCoolNowSayWhip Sun 27-Jan-13 18:22:13

Hi, have posted this in Premature Birth as well.

I'm 32 weeks exactly, and been having very strong BH since about 24/25 weeks. In the last week I've had stronger contractions that feel like the real thing (already have DD - 2yrs so I remember what they feel like!) but not regularly enough to get my midwife concerned. I also lost my plug on Monday. I'm having lower back pain on and off, and intense pressure on my pelvis - sometimes it feels like his head is pushing out!

Am I just being a bit paranoid? I don't want to waste time if I am, but just wondering if anyone else has gone into labour at about this time with similar symptoms?


Beveridge Sun 27-Jan-13 18:33:02

Not paranoid, you need to contact your/a midwife/ labour ward right away. I had a 32 weeker and had sciatic back pain and a "terrible stomach bug" that i thought couldn't be labour as it wasn't the mortal agony that it had been with DC1. I was wrong.

On the positive side, Ds was 5lb 5oz T 32 weeks and apart from needing tubefed for 3 weeks there was/is nowt wrong with him. But yes, you need to get hecked out now

Beveridge Sun 27-Jan-13 18:36:58

*checked. Good luck and try not to panic, 32 weeks is a good point to get past in a preterm pregnancy.

I have been like that with all of my pregnancies. In my experience, they are only interested if you are having regular contractions that are getting stronger/more painful. I found that very frustrating as I knew something was up before I was at that stage. When I got to that stage everyone was in a panic about it on labour ward and it escalated pretty quickly which is typical of pre-term labour. So, have you got a bag packed (with stuff for you) and childcare lined up for your DD? It's worth ringing up the labour ward although you may have to over exaggerate your symptoms so that they bother checking you (they'll do a speculum exam to check if there is anything happening to your cervix). They won't do anything if your cervix is OK but it's better to get checked than turn up later on when it is harder to stop a labour.

Wafflepuss Sun 27-Jan-13 19:12:29

If there is a risk of delivering this early you ought to be given steroid injections to speed up the baby's lung development, means he has a greater chance of being able to breathe independently rather than needing ventilation. You should go and get yourself checked out ASAP, I went from 0 to 4cm dilated in about 15 minutes at 32 weeks, pre term labours tend to move much faster than full term and you won't want to be delivering a 32 weeker at home as he'll need a bit of support and monitoring in scbu immediately after he's born. Fingers crossed all is ok though and he holds on for a few more weeks.

TwitchyTail Sun 27-Jan-13 19:19:20

Yes, definitely get checked out - steroid injections are important if your baby is going to make an imminent appearance. They'll do no harm at this stage and need 48 hours for full effect, so better safe than sorry.

SayCoolNowSayWhip Sun 27-Jan-13 19:32:08

Thanks all for your advice. I just really don't want to be making a fuss over nothing. I also don't want to overthink it and almost GIVE myself symptoms iyswim. But there's just this niggling feeling that something isn't quite right - but I don't know if that's just me being paranoid and TELLING myself that.

Arrgh! confused Baby brain and lack of sleep does NOT help!

But thanks again for all your help. I think I'll see how it goes tonight, and if things don't settle / get at all worse, I'll ring the labour ward. And I will pack the hospital bag just in case!

themindwonders Sun 27-Jan-13 19:37:51

i would go get checked out - they see it all the time, i went in at 32 weeks thinking i had BH - if it wasnt for a student dr who wasnt sure of herself my ds wouldnt be alive (he a very lively nearly 2 year old now)

lots of luck

How was your night saycool?

SayCoolNowSayWhip Mon 28-Jan-13 13:12:36

It was an ok night thanks - thought things had settled but today still got really bad back ache and now a splitting headache. Also need to pee every 30 mins!

SayCoolNowSayWhip Tue 29-Jan-13 14:53:01

So just as an update - am in the labour ward at the hospital now. Was having strong contractions and back pain. They did a test with a speculum that came back positive for possible labour - anyone had any experience with that?
They're keeping me in overnight and giving me 2 lots of steroids and some Niapolene (sp??) to stop the contractions.
Am a bit scared now'

Try not to worry. I had exactly the same experience (niggled for ages, knew something was wrong, had strong contractions at 32 weeks then treated with steroids and nifedipine). Take heart, the nifedipine is thought to be loads more effective than drugs used in the past that only bought you 48 hours max if you were lucky. When I was checked, I had an anterior, soft cervix that was almost fully effaced and dilating. I gave birth at 37 weeks exactly. And even if baby comes before then, you are in the right place having the right medication

Argh! Posted too soon... 32 weeks isn't that bad. Survival rates are about as high as they get and risks are low if baby is born somewhere safe and equipped. Labour can be very quick and premmies don't 'like' being born but it's not that bad (loads less painful than a full term birth if DD1 is anything to go by).

SayCool you are both in the best place smile hopefully the contractions can be slowed down/stopped and LO can cook for a bit longer after the steroids, but in any case, 32 weeks is good going.

DS was born at 31+5, 4lb 11.5oz, three weeks after I had the steroids. He briefly had c-pap (assisted ventilation) the first night, but other than that he just needed to gain weight and be able to regulate his temperature. He even had his sucking reflex, generally not thought to develop until 34 weeks. He was in SCBU for 16 days, and if you saw him now (9m, 7m corrected) you wouldn't have any idea he was prem.

Ask the MWs/Drs if you can speak to one of the neonatologists about what may happen if you deliver early, and if you are up to it, ask if you can visit the neonatal unit and familiarise yourself with the environment. If you want to breastfeed, it can be useful to seek out who can help you on the unit - our unit had a feeding specialist who gave support and assistance with expressing, and the nurses all helped me in establishing DS' feeding.

Best of luck, try and stay calm thanks rooting for you and LO smile

SayCoolNowSayWhip Tue 29-Jan-13 21:56:50

Thanks both smile thanks

My back is still killing me but the front contractions seem to have calmed down after the nifedipine (can't get that word right!). Had first steroid shot earlier and they're giving me my next shot at 4am (joy!)

Am bored in the hospital ward missing my DD hmm

Unborn DS does not seem affected by the drama - he's kicking and wriggling away! The last midwife who checked his heartbeat couldn't believe how much he was moving - literally rippling across my stomach Alien-style.

Thanks so much again for replying, I really appreciate it. Congrats on your healthy DS, Tea, that's a really reassuring story.

Hahaha DS was like that too. I almost got annoyed with him for being so jolly and active in there while I was stuck on the ward for 3 weeks!

I know how dull and lonely it is on the ward, so keep chatting to us here, and feel free to pm me if you would like to chat 1-to-1 or ask anything smile

SayCoolNowSayWhip Tue 29-Jan-13 22:22:57

3 weeks! Wow, you poor thing. Is your DS an active baby outside the womb? I have a feeling mine will be a handful!

An active baby is a very good thing if extremely annoying when you want to sleep. I'm 16 weeks pg with DC4 and not too keen to start feeling movement just yet. I've got HG which is enough of a reminder that I'm pg and disrupts my sleep without any help from a fidgety baby!

I know what you mean about getting bored as well. I just wanted to know what was going to happen one way or another. I got bored of hearing other women in labour. I wasn't very understanding about the women who were trying to get into labour and moaning about the pain that they were getting from their prostaglandin pessary blush

Yup, he is and always has been a wriggler. We call him fidgetbottom grin

Hope you've not got any snorers in tonight! They did my nut. Room we had a lady in overnight one night who was 1cm dilated, and 24 hrs later was just about 2cm - she just moaned and moaned and moaned. They kicked her out in the end, I felt a bit bad for her, but was glad to see her go!

SayCoolNowSayWhip Wed 30-Jan-13 00:27:47

There is only one other lady on my ward.... And yes, she's a prolific snorer. Joy! So much for any 'rest'.

Whinge whinge.....

Do you know, apparently a glass of wine can help to relax uterine contractions? Wish they'd offered that instead of nefedemine... wink

Poor you room, hope your HG gets better soon. Have they given you any meds for it? How are you coping with your other three DCs?? wine

Morning! I'm hoping that baby is still nicely cosy and you are sleeping! How have the contractions been over night? Did you end up with anyone being admitted during the night just to keep you awake that little bit longer?

Yes, I've had several different meds for HG and a hospital admission for severe dehydration. I hoped that it would be going by now, but no it's still hanging around. I've just woken up to take my ondansetron before the kids wake up. It is no fun for the other 3 DC because mummy can't do much.

SayCoolNowSayWhip Wed 30-Jan-13 06:52:59


Well, between the snoring, and the four o'clock steroid shot, and the 6.30 nifedipine round, I maybe snatched an hour or so..... wink But luckily no one else has been admitted. I expect Snoring Lady is just as annoyed at me for having 4am med calls as I am at her for snoring.

How old are your other DCs? Does the oldest understand that you're not well? I was very sick with this pg, but not in the league of HG, and I know how rubbish I felt so you must be really going through it. Sending anti-sick vibes!

Unborn DS says hi too.... does the little blighter ever sleep??

I want to say thankyou for talking to me and keeping me sane thanks

SayCoolNowSayWhip Wed 30-Jan-13 06:54:27

Oh and had a few BH tightenings but nothing major. Back was giving me jip but touch wood that's a lot better too. I think my little man is staying put for now, thank goodness. smile

That's really good smile hope everything settles down and you get to go home soon!

SayCoolNowSayWhip Wed 30-Jan-13 09:56:54

Just had the doctor round and he said they want to keep me in for 48 hours but that I could discharge myself if I really wanted to.
I really want to go home. I feel fine now and almost like I'm wasting their time!
DH thinks I should stay.
What do you think?

TwitchyTail Wed 30-Jan-13 09:58:58

Glad things are settling down SayCool. I was admitted for steroid shots at 29 weeks (YOW those things hurt - or am I just a wuss?) and baby is still safely tucked up inside at almost 33 weeks now. Hope yours goes the same way! smile

Stay. Sorry, I know you don't want to hear that but if you are going to labour when the nifedipine wears off, it could happen quickly and be a short labour so best to be in hospital until 48 hours after last steroid injection. Also, you never get to stay in hospital taking up a bed unless they think you really should so the doc clearly thinks it is best to stay put for a short while. You may find that once the nifedipine starts wearing off that you will get a lot of niggly pains that are brought on by just about anything (having a wee, not having a wee. Standing up, sitting down etc). At any point these niggles can turn into the real thing and baby isn't out of the danger zone for respiratory problems until 48 hours past the last steroid dose.


Hi OP. I had a positive 'actim partus' test (the swab they do with the speculum) with contractions at 27 weeks. I was admitted for 4 days, then again at 29 weeks for 5 days, when I actually got to 2cm dilated. Fingers crossed everything has settled down a bit now, I am 31 + 2 now and still holding on, though I have had to start my mat leave much earlier than I was anticipating. I had the steroids at 27 weeks and bloody hell they hurt!

I have a very active baby and my symptoms were described as 'irritable uterus' which can be caused simply by all the wriggling setting off tightenings. I am still getting lots and lots of BH contractions, and proper ones overnight but I only need to go back in if they get much stronger.

My DS was born at 33 weeks with no prior warning that it might happen. He is a boisterous 3yo now. You're in the right place if you do deliver so I would hold on. Best of luck.

SayCoolNowSayWhip Wed 30-Jan-13 10:49:56

Thanks all. Not what I wanted to hear but I know you're right hmm

To compound things, my doctor just phoned to say that a wee sample I had tested last week was positive for a uti bug (klebsiella?? (Sp) ) and when I told her I was at the hospital she wanted to speak to the midwife. The midwife had just brought my discharge forms and was actually, IMO, quite rude. She said 'well I can't do anything about it, does she want to speak to the doctor here?' So she went off and had a word with the dr who then relayed back that they would deal with it here. And the midwife grumpy sod stomped off with my discharge notes!

So now I have no idea what's going on!

I hope your little ones stay put Marjorie and Twitchy.

Yes those steroid shots hurt like hell! And really stingy for ages afterwards!

This little guy is proper active so I guess maybe he's irritated my uterus as well?

<sigh> Thanks for all your replies though, you're really helping smile thanks

So, are you staying in or has grumpy midwife discharged you?

SayCoolNowSayWhip Wed 30-Jan-13 12:55:38

I self-discharged.... Against all advice I know. But to be honest what I really need is some rest and there's no way I'll get that in hospital. It's only a 15 minute drive if anything does happen and I do feel much better.

sundaesundae Wed 30-Jan-13 15:51:55

Don't stress about it, they wouldn't have offered you to go home if they thought it was risky. Feet up lots of rest and keep cooking that bump smile You are due the day before me I think so, stop frightening me ;)

SayCoolNowSayWhip Wed 30-Jan-13 16:28:06

Sorry Sundae! You'll be fine. I'm actually on the sofa having a very small glass of wine - for medicinal purposes, you understand.... wink

sundaesundae Wed 30-Jan-13 16:30:16

hehe, and my vanilla slice was for the same reason. I was only kidding about scaring me, don't worry. Hoping yours stays in a bit longer, I heat alcohol relaxed uterine contractions. 32 weeks and having had steroids you're in a great position smile

How's everything today, saycool?

SayCoolNowSayWhip Thu 31-Jan-13 16:31:25

Ok thanks - nice to sleep in my own bed last night!

Knackered though. Been out and about today and might have overdone it slightly.... blush

Naughty! You must take it easy! <stern face>

SayCoolNowSayWhip Fri 01-Feb-13 08:53:50

blush Yes, Mum.....

Whatshappenedtous Sun 03-Feb-13 07:26:32

I went into labour with strong tightening pains at 33 weeks after 60 hours of on off BH contractions I had my DD by EMCS as heart stopped. Don't over do it I wish I had listened to the dr's

Whatshappenedtous Sun 03-Feb-13 07:27:30

Should of said my waters went at 29 weeks had steroids etc discharged myself and even changed hospital after a hormonal rage!

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