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just heard friend had her baby at 28 weeks - what does this mean?

(27 Posts)
emeraldgirl1 Sun 14-Aug-11 22:01:59

DH and I have been very upset to hear this evening that our friend's baby (due early Oct) has come early - can't be sure if it's 28 or 29 weeks, but certainly no more than that. I have NO idea about premature birth and how it's handled these days and not even sure if this is the right forum to ask about it - but does anyone have experience of this? Is 28/29 weeks viable? Are there health problems for the baby in the future? We're so worried - they're away right now and we know very little sad

Ninunina Sun 14-Aug-11 22:20:57

28 weeks is very early, but should be viable. I'm not very well read on the subject, but I remember reading that a pregnant woman enters her 3rd trimester once the pregnancy becomes viable (27-28 weeks). If your friend is due in early October then she must be more than 30 weeks.

deemented Sun 14-Aug-11 22:29:11

My DS2 is a 28 weeker. He weighed 2lb 14oz at birth and spent 17 very very long weeks in NICU/SCBU.

He was very poorly for a couple of weeks and there were several times we thought we were going to lose him too (his twin died shortly after birth, due to a congenital anomaly, not related to being prem) He was on a ventilator, then CPAP until he was finally weaned from that and then when he reached what would have been about 33/34 weeks he was just in air, and was ok just needed to grow. A few weeks after that he started having bradycardic episodes, which were quite frightning, but luckily he outgrew them.

He was small for a long long time, and had the 'prem' look, but he's soon to be seven and he's utterly fantastic.

emeraldgirl1 Sun 14-Aug-11 22:44:52

Hi deemented - wow you don't know how happy I am to hear your story!! Am so pleased for you that you have a lovely healthy 7yo after a scary start. And it gives a bit of relief to me and DH that our friend's baby can (fingers crossed) be OK. We don't know what to say at the moment as we're unsure whether to congratulate or not - seems so sad not to be able to celebrate this but right now we're just so worried and praying everything is going to work out.

thanks too ninunina - that sounds hopeful too - 28 weeks just sounds so very young!!! We have no idea of weight or anything atm

MrsRhettButler Sun 14-Aug-11 22:47:27

I'm due early sep and have 3 weeks left so add 4 or 5 weeks to that and she must be more than what you are saying no? I hope that's the case anyway smile

Best of luck to baby whatever the case

deemented Sun 14-Aug-11 22:48:36

Oh please do congratulate them - after all, their child has just been born! It saddens me slightly, that in DS2's memory box there are no 'Congratulations, it's a boy!' cards - people were so unsure wether to send one or not, that they simply didn't. I think it's really important, even if, god forbid, the worst does happen, at least the parents know that their childs life has been recognised, iyswim?

emeraldgirl1 Sun 14-Aug-11 22:54:15

Hi deemented - thank you for putting it that way, it makes perfect sense and I'm so sorry to hear how it was for your DS2, bless him. I think we can/should send a text saying how pleased we are and sending all our love to the whole family. ATM we have no idea where they are (hospital, that is, they are away on holiday poor things) so can't send a card/flowers just yet

emeraldgirl1 Sun 14-Aug-11 22:55:35

Mrs Rhett Butler - my maths is shocking... I think due date was Oct 4th, can't remember for sure. Good luck for your own big day!

Dilligaf81 Sun 14-Aug-11 23:00:11

Myself and my sister were born at 29 weeks, I was 1lb and my sister was 2lb odd. My mother was told we wouldnt survive and if we did we would be severly disabled.
30 years later I have 4 beautiful children have no physical or mental disablements.

I would pass on congratulations having.

Just think how far medicine has progressed.

Please update us with any news. x

Dilligaf81 Sun 14-Aug-11 23:01:07

I meant me with no disablements not my childresn (reading that back Im not evene sure thats a real word) opps

MrsRhettButler Sun 14-Aug-11 23:02:16

Thanks, i'm due sep 3 and i'm 37 weeks so she couldnt be less than 32 weeks which is a lot better than 28 smile

(I hope anyway)

MrsRhettButler Sun 14-Aug-11 23:03:44

Wow! 1lb? That's amazing that you're ok dillig smile

silverangel Mon 15-Aug-11 07:41:40

28 weeks is viable. The baby will have probably have had / continue to have some help with breathing as lungs will not be fully developed. If she was able to have steroid injections this will have helped the lungs mature. Will also be tube fed For a while.

My twins were delivered at 31 weeks, 3lb3 and 3lb6, they are in SCBU but absolutely fine, they just need to get bigger!

emeraldgirl1 Mon 15-Aug-11 07:53:54

thanks silverangel - as clever and helpful posters have pointed out it is likely that my friend was more like 31 weeks than 28 so I'm really hoping this extra time will have made a difference!!

nannyl Mon 15-Aug-11 08:41:12

Babies have a (very small) chance of survival from about 24 / 25 weeks.

Every week beyond that is a bonus, though the longer they stay in the better obviously.

A sort of rule of thumb (which can vary between babies obviously) is before 32 weeks they need a special hospital with neonatal intensive care, and after 32 weeks a normal special care baby unit can care for them.

Im due 11 Sep, and am 36+1. Your friend is due 3 weeks 2 days after me, so must be over 32 weeks.
It HIGHLY likely her baby will be fine, and may only need special care, not even a special hospital with neonatal intensive care.

Some babies born in their 34th week can be AT HOME a few days later before they would be even 35 weeks pregnant

emeraldgirl1 Mon 15-Aug-11 08:52:12

thanks so so much nannyl, I am feeling much less worried and just hopeful that I will hear something more from them today. I think the fact that they're away from home makes it all seem scarier... but your post was very reassuring.

PTA Mon 15-Aug-11 09:09:27

DS2 born at 29 +2 so 10 weeks early. He has Down's Syndrome and condition that caused the early arrival that was operated on when he was 5 days old.

He is now a very happy, healthy nearly 5 year old.

The general rule of thumb for premmies coming home (it was repeated like a mantra to me!) "Go by your due date and you shouldn't be disappointed". True to form as ds2 was home one week before due date.

HTW and congrats to your friends on their new arrival.

TheOriginalFAB Mon 15-Aug-11 09:18:27

Definitely send a card.

I hope they are all okay. Is this their first baby?

emeraldgirl1 Mon 15-Aug-11 09:28:35

the original FAB - yes, their first! I'm still in shock that this happened while they were on hol so i can only imagine how much in shock they are!! Don't know how they're going to manage being away until they can move the baby but I imagine right now they're not even thinking about that... thanks too PTA and glad to hear your DS2 is healthy!!

GlaikitFizzog Mon 15-Aug-11 09:36:13

A very good friend of mine had both her DDs early. DD1 at 30w and DD2 at 27. Both girls are an absolute joy! DD1 is so clever it's scary and is always trying t pull a fast one over her mum! DD2 has just turned 1 so is still at the baby phase, but had been given the all clear from the hospital.

Your friend may have a long slog in front of then until they get their LO home, but it really is amazing the care that is available now.

Youremindmeofthebabe Mon 15-Aug-11 13:56:23

My best friend had her baby at 28/29 weeks around 5 years ago. She weighed 3lb which was apparently good for her gestation. She was allowed home weighing 5lb-ish around her due date in October IIRC, and met all her milestones for her adjusted age. She is now the sturdiest brightest child of 5 I have seen!

sleepevader Mon 15-Aug-11 14:04:36

Are they abroad or in this country? Hopefully if in UK in a couple of weeks baby will be moved to a more local unit.

Please do congratulate them. Agree with what deemented said.

Being a parent of prem babies can be very expensive. Often mum is discharged and has to travel some distance to visit which can be a drain financially.

When they are closer maybe offer to do washing/cook meals/shopping for them.

If dad is taking parental leave they may be able to claim some income support especially if unpaid.

GibberingGinger Mon 15-Aug-11 14:06:34

Like lots of people have said above, medical care is very good nowadays and hopefully your friends little one will only be in SCBU a short while. Like others I was always told to aim for my due date and we were all out of SCBU about 10 days before that smile

I would send a congratulations card too. I remember meeting a mum in SCBU who said it took about 6 weeks before someone said congratulations on the birth of your baby to her sad

MadamDeathstare Mon 15-Aug-11 14:11:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

emeraldgirl1 Mon 15-Aug-11 20:02:25

thanks again everyone for posts - sleepevader they are out of the country unfortunately - they are getting incredible care I gather but obviously the issue is that it is all going to be horrendously expensive to stay there while their baby is in the hospital. Mum is doing well apparently which is great news - she has a very supportive family who are going out there so hopefully that will allow dad to come back to work/UK to get things straight if he needs to.

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