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decelerations in the baby's heartbeat - what causes them and what effect do they have?

(8 Posts)
olivo Sun 09-Aug-09 14:45:42

sorry, i have been on here a lot asking questions but am reading through my notes and am trying to egt my head around a few things.

i was admitted last week after a CTG showed decelerations of the baby's heartbeat after contractions. they said that if this was labour (they thought i may be having a preterm labour) then it could be a problem.

Can anyone explain why it happens and what problems it could cause? should i be worried?

If the baby hasnt arrived, i have an appt later in the week and will ask but would like a little info up front!


PinkTulips Sun 09-Aug-09 14:53:26

With dd her heart rate dropped dramatically when she dropped during labour as the cord was around her shoulder and when she locked into my pelvis it became compressed and she stopped receiving oxygen. It was very scary and i was seconds away from being rushed for a c-section when i managed to heave her out in record time (mostly thanks to the mw manually stretching my cervix the last few cms and having me push like mad when i didn't have the urge yet). She was blue, floppy and unresponsive as she's been oxygen starved for about 20 mins between the cord becoming compressed and her being born, her heart rate dropped down to 30 bpm for alot of this time and she needed to be resuscitated and was then incubated for a while as she was very cold and she was wheezing and coughing as she had taken in some fluid during the whole process.

She was right as rain in no time though... shouting the ward down and making her presence felt and i was allowed home with her the next day with no bother smile

Have they scanned you to check where the cord is? One possibility is that the cord is lodged in an odd spot of even possibly knotted or tangled.

olivo Sun 09-Aug-09 15:07:45

hello PT, nice to hear from you.hope you and the DCs are well.

oh bugger, didnt realise it could be something like that. no, they haven't scanned me in the past week, was having regular ones because of GD and polyhydramnios. oxygen deprivation is one of my biggest fears. i will ask when i have my appt. the HR was dropping at the end of each contraction and then coming back up each time. when they re-monitored in the morning, they werent so concerned.

ZippysMum Sun 09-Aug-09 15:22:25

hi olivo
Before you panic.......
Just to say it is NORMAL for the fetal heart rate to decelerate as you have a contraction, get slowest at the peak of the contraction and then return to normal. Other patterns (like the deceleration happening at a different time are more worrying - like PinkTulip's experience)

They would have been re-monitoring to check there wasn't a more sinister pattern: more info here

If they were happy to let you go, then they saw only the normal pattern or they wouldn't have let you go! Hope that is helpful smile

olivo Sun 09-Aug-09 16:00:04

thank you zippy, that is reassuring. i will read the link in a sec. apparently it was coming back to normal more quickly the next morning.
every time i'm there, i'm given something else to panic about! i'm exhausted already!!

PinkTulips Sun 09-Aug-09 21:30:12

how long to go now olivo? must be soon, you're due on dd's birthday right?

don't worry too much, it sounds like the hospital are just being thorough, like zippy said a lot of babies do decelerate their heartbeats during contractions without it being a sign of anything sinister, i'd imagine the hospital are just being over cautious because of the other complications smile

we're all good, ds2 is teething and trying to remove my nipple with his new tooth, dd is starting school at the end of the month and C is starting playschool.... am feeling very emotional atm watching them all grow up so fast blush

Hangingbellyofbabylon Sun 09-Aug-09 22:56:53

Hi, with my dd's heart traces, decels were only a problem when they didn't come back up again quickly.

olivo Mon 10-Aug-09 09:08:32

I'm 37 +3,(yes, due on dd's b'day grin) but i think they're looking to deliver a bit early due to the other things going on. Can't believe they are all growing up so fast, frightening.

hanging, i think that was the problem, but it seemed to resolve itself. have finished ploughing through the 6 pages of notes now; my pg notes are full up!blush

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