Saturday, December 29, 2012

Baby's First A

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Baby G2 decided earlier on he didn't want to blend in with the crowd, so rather than grow a nice, normal two-artery umbilical cord, he decided he only needed one. Maybe he was trying to be thrifty, or just sleek and chic. Anyway, this anomaly, known as Single Umbilical Artery, or SUA, is the last remaining leftover from our September scare.

Yesterday, we began weekly monitoring appointments that will continue until Baby's delivery: a biophysical profile and a non-stress test. Yesterday's appointment also included a growth scan, but I'm under the impression that the growth scan won't happen weekly. The biggest risk with SUA is interuterine growth restriction--the baby doesn't get enough nutrients through the one artery and can't grow enough. Also, with one artery, there isn't the same wiggle room should something in the umbilical cord become comprised. With this said, everyone I know in the medical field has assured me that SUA is generally not a big deal. In fact, yesterday as the nurse was getting the non-stress test going, she asked what exactly prompted this extra monitoring, and when I told her SUA, she said, "Oh. That's it." While anything abnormal causes stress and anxiety for me, the message we've constantly received is that while the doctors want to make sure everything is okay, everything will be okay.

As far as the monitoring yesterday, Baby G2 passed with flying colors. He is measuring at 4 lbs. 11 ozs, or the 64th percentile--about 5 ozs. less than Lydia was at this point, though there is a margin of error with ultrasound growth measurements. No growth restriction. (For those that weren't around or don't remember, Lydia was monitored for the opposite problem; she was huge.)

Biophysical profiles are ultrasounds that assess fetal movement, muscle tone, amniotic breathing, and amniotic fluid paired with a non-stress test. Baby scored 8 out of 8 on the ultrasound portion and did his thing on the non-stress test, though I needed to down some apple juice in the middle to get him moving--seems he tuckered himself out kicking away during the ultrasound and wanted to lay back and relax during the non-stress test, not giving them the movements and, more importantly, heart rate accelerations, they wanted to see. Once I got a little sugar in my bloodstream, he got moving and things didn't take too long. Biophysical profiles end in a score out of 10, and Baby scored 100%--his first A.

I am not thrilled that this will be a weekly event until Baby's debut, but after going through one appointment, I have less anxiety about the 8 or so to come. I am going to take a fellow mama's advice and listen to Hypnobirthing meditation CDs during the next appointment; I think that might ease my peace of mind while waiting for the ultrasound tech and nurses to count all of the things they are looking for. For the first appointment, I wanted to be able to listen and ask questions, but in the future, I think keeping anxiety at bay during the two hours at the clinic might be more important; they'll tell me what I need to know.

One down. Eight to go.

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