* Author Topic: Failed induction, emergency CS following PPROM 29w, Severe Pre-Eclampsia 35w 3d  (Read 2120 times)

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Offline Miss Sunshine22

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So, here it is, the Birth Story. It's taken four weeks to feel up to committing it to "paper" ...


wtf where did that pre eclampsia spring from?

For those who have been reading my diary, you'll be aware that I'd had a pretty eventful pregnancy up to now, with PPROM at 29w 3d rearing its head whilst me and DH were on holidays in South Wales. Against the odds, Baby S had managed to stay put inside, despite not having much of a swimming pool to play in  ::) Following several inpatient admissions, scans, CTG monitorings, swabs, blood tests, the plan was to aim for 36w 1d and then induce.

It seems my body had different plans ...

At 34w 5d, at my usual hospital monitoring appointment, my blood pressure suddenly started to spike. It had been very well behaved up to this point, as had all my urinalyses. However, it started off that morning a bit higher than usual at 139/85. The midwife wasn't happy, and kept repeating it every 15 minutes, and within 2 hours it had gone up to 165/92 :o I was also, for the first time, showing some protein in my wee ... So I was admitted ... again  ::)

After an overnight stay, more bloods, more urine tests, and a number of blood pressure medications I was told I could go home the next evening. The doctor told me that it was more of a "pregnancy induced hypertension" than a pure "pre-eclampsia" and so they were happy to send me home. Hmmmm ... I wasn't so sure and pointed out that on the current medications, my blood pressure was still erratic and spiking. He thought about it for a few seconds and then agreed to add in a third tablet and send me home. It was at this point, I had a bad feeling, a sense of "doom" and I felt afraid for both me and the baby. When DH came in to collect me, I started to cry and told him my fears, my exact words were "there's something wrong with my system, my body". I also noticed my hands and feet were itching, and I was scratching my wrists red raw :( I told one of the midwives, who said to mention it at my monitoring appointment the next day.

This baby wants out ...

That night, the sense of fear continued, and I noticed my body had started doing some weird "twitching", i.e. my legs and arms would periodically jerk, and the sense of "something is wrong with my body" continued. The next morning, I felt really rough as I made my way to the hospital for my monitoring appointment. When I got there, I couldn't stop shivering with the cold, and so a blanket was put around me as they took my blood pressure. When this was repeatedly too high, despite being on bp meds, they took more bloods and urine. Unfortunately, these came back showing more protein in the wee and, now, abnormal liver function tests. Add this to the fact that, for the first time I was found to have an infection, the decision was made there and then to admit me for an induction. Oh the relief ... finally after 6 weeks of PPROM hell, tiptoeing around to avoid water loss, sofa bound boredom, and complete lack of interaction with the outside world, this leg of the journey was finally going to end. We were now going to meet our baby  :)

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    Offline Miss Sunshine22

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    Induction - I suppose it might work ?

    After a sleepless night of really bad heartburn, insomnia, and worry due to the baby's heart being "different" to normal, they agreed to a 'trial of induction' the next day. Me and DH were quite excited at the prospect :) The first step was the insertion of the gel pessary, at 11.00 a.m, which was not the most comfortable of things, but thankfully gas and air came to my rescue (lovely stuff  ::)). My cervix was described as "long and unfavourable" so all the midwives said it was a "longshot" that the induction would work. Still .. me and DH were optimistic enough, especially as the gel started off REALLY painful cramps almost immediately. Wow - it reminded me of my endometriosis days, which I'd not had in a while due to being pregnant (obviously) and being on prolonged down-reg. I definitely needed to use some breathing techniques to manage these cramps - and some codeine and paracetamol too  ::)

    We had been told that, due to the risks of infection from PPROM, they would only try the gel once and then move us into delivery suite afterwards if that failed. Initially we were told that due to a queue, it may be a day or two before we get brought into the delivery suite. So, imagine our na´ve surprise when we jumped the queue to be brought into the delivery suite at 10.00 pm that same evening. At the time, I never questioned why they jumped us up the queue ... I just went with it.

    When my cervix was examined by the midwife, she said that the gel had softened the cervix, but it was still very much closed  :( So, this time the drip was inserted and we naively hoped that something would happen. However, the long, long hours dragged on. One hour passed, four hours passed, 8 hours passed, and then 16 hours passed pretty uneventfully, apart from the fact that I fell asleep twice and the cramps got to a paltry 3/10 in intensity ::) Sleep evaded poor DH, as he sat on an uncomfortably hard chair - the kind you get in school classrooms  ::) After about 8 hours, the midwife examined me again and said that there was a slight change in the cervix, woo hoo  ;D However, after 12 hours and another examination, she told me that the cervix had closed right up again and any progress made by the gel and the first 8 hours had regressed. Eh????

    During this time, the medics kept doing tests on me, but did not explain why. I had numerous blood tests - I was told this was because the anaesthetist wanted them for an epidural and if a C-section was required (fine, I thought, at least they're being thorough); I had an ECG done of my heart because they said my magnesium levels were too high and my pulse rate was very low, and they wanted to check my heart was working properly (okay, I thought, but my heart is fine, surely?); I had to keep weeing into a large paper trough-thing as they wanted to measure my urine output, but never explained why. They also wanted to insert a catheter to accurately measure my output, as I was now only allowed fluids by drip - However, I refused a catheter at this point, as they never really explained why they wanted to measure it precisely.

    By 2.00 the next day, we all agreed quite unanimously, that the induction had been a big, fat flop. My cervix was as tight as twopence, completely closed for business. I guess I should have been thankful for it, as this was probably why Baby S was not evicted any sooner when my waters broke ...  ::)

    So now a c-section was on the cards ... it was inevitable really, I always felt it would come down to this. At this point, again, we never questioned why I skipped the queue and was put down for an "emergency" c section. All I kept thinking was - "I'm glad I never forked out any money for those hypnobirthing classes I was looking at"  ::)

    Offline Miss Sunshine22

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    The C Section

    At 2.30ish, I was brought to the theatre to prep for the c section, while DH waited outside. The theatre had 10-15 staff members in it - midwife x1, theatre nurses x4, student nurse, obstetricians x2, paediatricians x2, anaesthetists x2 ... the theatre itself was like a huge "waiting room", it had 2-3 operating tables in it, a huge ceiling, and loads of cupboards. I was sure it was the pre-theatre room, and felt a bit foolish when I asked "where will the surgery be?" Doh  ^idiot^

    At this point, I started to feel a bit nauseous, but put it down to having an empty stomach (I was nil by mouth from 12 hrs before). Also, I felt nervy, uneasy, and edgy - unable to make much small talk with the staff who asked the question I had been asked a thousand times before - "Do you know if it's a boy or a girl?" When they found out I was allergic to chlorhexadine, all proceedings were immediately halted. Apparently, EVERYTHING in the theatre was sterilised with this chemical, and they were dismayed that this information had not been conveyed to them beforehand. So they had to consult with Dr. Google (honestly - DH said he could see them looking it up on computer ::)) for an alternative, as apparently their Plan B sterilising regime is not suitable in pregnancy.

    So an hour after I got to the theatre, the anaesthetist proceeded to administer the spinal block, and I was feeling woozy, uneasy, and a bit "out of it" which I put down to not having a proper sleep for over 48 hours. Just before the injection went in, all proceedings were stopped again as they thought I had a skin infection on my spine, right where the injection had to go in. The anaesthetist said he didn't want to risk introducing an infection into the spinal fluid, to which I thought "Urgh, yep, that's the last thing I need." My heart sank, and I just thought in despair "What else can go wrong with my body .... Will this baby ever come out!" However, they analysed the area a bit closer and concluded that it was safe to proceed.

    So, the spinal block was administered ... and within a minute or so, I had lost all feeling and movement in my lower legs and up to just below my ribs. And boy did really hate it - I felt trapped, scared, freaked out. I started to hyperventilate, and went on to have a panic attack, crying, saying over and over again "I hate it, I hate it, make it stop". I couldn't understand what was wrong with me - I've never had a panic attack in my life, or any anxiety like I was experiencing, and here I was freaking out in the theatre, not quite sure why. I managed to calm myself enough for them to test whether the block had worked - they sprayed cold air onto me and tested whether I could feel it or not. When they were satisfied it had worked, they brought DH into the theatre, put the barrier up, and proceeded with the c section.

    I surprised myself with how much I hated the c section and I had to really try hard to stop the tears flowing, as they made the cuts. I know now that this anxiety was probably due to what was going on with my body (it is common in pre-eclampsia and Hellp Syndrome to feel anxious and a sense of doom, but I didn't know this at the time). They had warned me that there would be a sense of tugging and pressure, and they weren't lying. The whole thing felt quite brutal and seemed to take an age - but in reality it was only about 10 minutes or so. All the way through, one of the staff members in theatre kept saying to me "you're doing fine, you're doing really well" and I kept thinking "why are you saying this to me? Does it look like I'm not fine, and so you need to keep saying this ..." (Talk about being illogical  ::))

    Then we heard the words "Boy" and a newborn baby cry and DH and I looked at each other in relief, we heard a cry, that was a good sign :) They then briefly held him over the top of the barrier and took him off to be weighed and checked over. DH and I both started to cry with relief and all other sorts of emotions, and the staff brought tissues for us. Then they told us he was perfectly healthy and put him lying next to us while they stitched me up.

    The stitching up took about 30 minutes, and I lay there next to DH just looking at him and taking him in. I think I was still in shock and kept touching his little head, taking him in, the colour of his hair, his little mouth which kept moving, and his little tongue which he kept sticking out. I was in a daze for this time, not quite "with the world" but remember feeling a sense of relief when the surgeon said "C Section Completed, uneventful".

    Offline Miss Sunshine22

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    Hellp - it's the Post Delivery bit

    After they stitched me up, I started to feel really sick and asked if they could take Baby S away as I feared I would throw up on him. They then took him to Special Care so he could start his antibiotics and DH left the theatre to go into the recovery area.

    At this point, the anaesthetist injected something into my canula (she said it was an anti-emetic) and I was left in the room with two staff members. All of a sudden, I felt myself losing the ability to move my upper body, and I started to drift into unconsciousness, my eyelids started to close, and then sheer terror struck. I remember thinking "Don't close your eyes, whatever you do, you've got to hold on, if you let yourself go, you're going to die." I was barely able to speak and slurred out "What have you given me, I can't talk, I can't talk ... there's something wrong" Despite their reassurances that I was fine, I forced myself to say "No, there's something wrong, I can't talk". I managed to catch them looking uneasily at each other and then they said "Let's put her observations back on ..." When these went back on, they again said "You're fine, your obs are fine, better than ours would be ..." and then they said "Let's take you to the recovery area."

    When I was being brought into recovery, my blood pressure started to spike and the alarm on the machine went off. DH was in the recovery room and he said he got a shock when he saw how much I had deteriorated in the few minutes since he'd left the theatre. I heard the midwife say "get her in here" and I could see all the worried faces in the room, as another blood pressure measure was taken, which was higher again. When they took another one, which was higher again at 181/105, they all looked at each other, turned the machine away so I could no longer see it. I was unable to talk above a whisper and kept saying "I'm so scared ... I'm so scared ... I think I'm going to die". All I could think of was "Oh my God, we've been through so much to get to this point, and now I'm going to leave DH and our baby".

    When one of the staff members produced a blood pressure tablet, I could see her face change to horror as my hand spasmed and struggled to grasp it. At this point, I heard the midwife say "Why are we just giving her a tablet, this is mag sulphate territory" When I heard this, I kept thinking "Please don't have a stroke, please don't have a stroke, just hold on until they can get this into you" After what seemed like a few minutes later, a doctor I'd not seen before came into the room, showed me a syringe, and said "This is magnesium sulphate, it will protect your brain against injury and stroke. You will feel like your body is on fire very shortly afterwards, but that's completely normal." I whispered "Will it bring my blood pressure down?" and she said "It might, sometimes it can, but sometimes not." I also noticed that they had brought one of the Consultants into the room, and my first thought was "They're bringing in the big guns now ... is this a good thing or a bad thing?" Not long after she plunged the canula, I did feel like my arms and legs were on fire, but it didn't bother me as I'd been told this was normal. Almost immediately after it was given, I felt like my body was being "reset" and I knew that it had worked. Another blood pressure measure was taken and all eyes were on the machine (apart from mine, as the machine was turned away from me) as it beeped and counted out the measure. I could see the relief on everyone's face and hear the sighs - relieved words were spoken 145/80 - it had worked ...

    First of all, congrats on your bundle of joy!
    But ...my God! Thank God you survived! I can imagine how you felt going through all of that!

    Offline bundles

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    Oh gosh honey  ^hugme^ I felt all emotional reading that. Especially as at this time 5yrs ago my induction had failed miserably and we all decided a section was the way to go ! Didn't have all your dramas though !
    Huge congratulations  ^hugme^

    xx

    Offline Twinkle toes 75

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    Jings miss sunshine you've certainly been through the wringer but woohoo baby sunshine is here ☀️ I remember when we were cycle buddies and you had all your lovely team sunshine embies and now we've both got our precious little bundles. I too had a pretty awful birth with failed induction and pre-eclampsia and ended up with kidney failure but it's all a distant memory now and yours will be too. Enjoy all those lovely newborn cuddles.
    Big hugs
    Twinkle xxx

    Offline Tincancat

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    Such a journey you have had.  Hope things settle down now baby S is here.
    TCCx

    Offline Miss Sunshine22

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    Thanks everyone for the kind words  :)

    Twinkle yes I remember our cycling days  :) I'm sorry to hear about your awful birth experience ^hugme^ It must have been hard, especially with twins. The memories are fading now thankfully. Still there a little bit, but nowhere near as bad as the first couple of weeks. Glad to hear you're also feeling better.