Good News and Scary Contractions

Although not official, the LP and MT and I picked up my blood test results from last week. The great news: my fasting blood glucose and one-hour and two-hour levels were all within the reference range and not supportive of a gestational diabetes diagnosis. Yay!

My OB has already said that either he or my MFM will make me repeat this test between 24-28 weeks but for now I am simply relieved to have one less thing to be worrying about and far fewer medical appointments in the coming weeks than would have been required had I flunked the test at this point. I may ask about an alternate means of evaluating if I have insulin resistance as the two-hour GTT wrecked me for an entire day and I felt hung over the next day as well. I would rather not go through that again if there is a reasonable alternative.

The only hiccup in my test results was that my hemoglobin (HGB) is now low. This is not entirely surprising given my anemia history but I was disappointed to see it having dropped from being in the 160s in late December to under 120 last week. Time to resume more aggressive supplementation so I don’t end up needing injections at my OB’s office. There is always something.

On the subject of scary contractions: Yesterday I had some mild contractions in the afternoon. In the evening, they were full-on and I was in somewhat intense pain/discomfort for about 60-90 minutes in which I had about 3 or 4 (maybe more?) pronounced contractions. They lasted way too long for me to blow them off but not long enough for me to accept the LP’s suggestion that we trek on over to the hospital.

That said, I was scared. Too scared to move. I laid in bed and prayed that Azulito/a was going to be alright. I had felt plenty of movement earlier in the day but nothing during the hour or so that these contractions carried on. When the pain finally passed and my uterus calmed down again I grabbed the Doppler. Baby’s heart rate was lower than usual but still within normal range (usually it is around 160-165; it was 151-153 last night after the dramatic uterine performance).

I have never had Braxton Hicks contractions or “false labour” before. I hope that this is what last night was all about but it seemed really intense to be a practice round for labour this early (I’m only 20w5d today). Naturally, while the contractions were going on I thought about all of the warnings I have been given regarding risks of preterm labour with the placenta previa, immune issues, suspected placental development and prednisone use. I was and am scared but for now my plan is to wait and see rather than calling my OB’s office (which is closed today as it is a holiday here in any event). If this happens again I will call on the “better safe than sorry” principle.

If any of you have experience with this kind of thing I would be interested in your experiences. If anyone is convinced I should not wait and should call my OB or see someone sooner rather than later please let me know. Having never experienced this before I feel a little uncertain about the “right” thing to do.

40 thoughts on “Good News and Scary Contractions

  1. Yay for the good news! You deserve all good news from here on out. Boo for the contractions. I know you’re up to your eyebrows with the medical system but better safe than sorry is my absolute recommendation. You know I don’t want to scare you but I put off going to the hospital until it was too late for my boys because I didn’t want to be a baby about mild pain and I didn’t think the cramps were a big deal. Who knows if they would have been able to prevent me from going into labor if I had gone in earlier. Maybe not. But if it happens to you again, go to the dr./hospital. If they call you crazy and send you home perfect. If not, and you need assistance you’ll have done the best thing you can. Sending love and calming uterus energy.

    • That is very sound and reasonable advice. Thank you for sharing your perspective. I really appreciate this. I may call and leave a message at my OBs answering service today come to think of it. I don’t want to sound neurotic but I don’t want to regret doing nothing either. So hard to know what is best.

      • Yes exactly. Don’t be afraid of sounding neurotic. Let them think you’re a neurotic mess, who cares, if it gets you the care and attention you need. If it happens for me again I’m going to the hospital for every twinge and gas pain. I won’t be taking any chances and second guessing myself because of what other people might think. That said don’t freak out for no reason. Get quiet, talk to baby A and see what you need. πŸ’›

        • Good advice. I will try to talk to Baby A. I called my Dr but they no longer have an answering service, just direct you to L&D if 20 weeks or later. I emailed Dr. B as a half way measure and hope he reads it today and says don’t panic. I will ask the LP how he feels about it today too.

  2. I had Braxton Hicks from like 17 weeks on with Lettie. From week 33 on they were every five minutes, and continued on like the for the rest of my pregnancy. I kept going to the hospital and they kept sending me home, saying I wasn’t in labor despite the contractions. They finally told me not to come back unless I was doubled over in pain, which eventually did happen, and that was that. All that is to say that contractions can be very normal, even if you didn’t have them last time. Mine were not usually very painful, though. If I were you, I would definitely give the on-call OB a ring. Even if they just say not to worry, it will give you peace of mind. It’s always better to be overcautious in these situations, I think. Is baby’s movement better now?

  3. I am happy for your good news, and hope they have an alternative to the nasty orange drink. I would ask Dr. B what he thinks, as I kind of feel like he is the only person that really understands all of your history in making it to this point. If you get scared, trust your gut and seek some help. I am hoping that it is benign.

  4. I’m glad to hear that you are GD free!! I hope it stays that way. I hope the contractions were just BH contractions, but I could absolutely call your OB when their office is open again. Your OB sounds decent so I don’t see any harm in asking questions.

  5. I’ve been getting them. Never had them with the other two. Was sooo scared. Now just think it’s an “age” thing and that bank then I was younger and more ready for labour. Now my body has to practise!

    • I hope that’s all it is here too. The trouble is with the stupid previa they make a big deal about contractions and preterm labour. Hard to be s chilled mama when those warnings keep popping into my mind!

  6. Yep, I would call the OB or just walk into triage and get monitored.
    And speaking of pain, I keep getting what *I think* are BH contractions except they’re weird because they’re super painful and high up (think being punched in the stomach). No signs of “foul play” though. XOXO

    • I contacted Dr. Braverman as my OBs office no longer has an answering or on call service. Unless I get some bleeding I can wait and see as they wont do anything about the previa without bleeding. Baby is now moving a bunch so feeling better about not going in for now. I will call my OB tomorrow.

      That high pain is weird. It’s not upper right quadrant I hope?

      • Nope, not upper right quadrant (believe me I’m paranoid). The pain radiates out from the center above my belly button and reaches around my ribs. I was sore for awhile afterwards but baby has been moving (she even switched sides and her booty moved from left of my belly button to the right side). No itching, light headedness, swelling, headache, etc. and BP is normal so I’m waiting until I see Dr. Angel tomorrow afternoon–last time I saw him he said this pain sounded “normal” and I had 2 NST’s last week plus an US where the babes looked good. I think I’m just “lucky” that I have weird, painful BH. Only other thing to consider is I have an anterior placenta, but if it was detaching the pain wouldn’t go away & there’d probably be blood. So…? XOXO

        • Yeah. I think you are having bad luck. But I am glad you are seeing Dr. Angel tomorrow. If you weren’t I’d be handing back the advice you gave me. I do hope everything will be fine and my gut says it is – in both our cases for the moment – though it has no medical degree. πŸ˜‰

  7. Yay!! I told you that this was all a test of your faith ! The next time you hear some alarming news, trust that God has got you !!! He keeps proving this over and over again !!

    You should up your water intake quite a bit to help with the contractions. πŸ™‚

    So happy for you and Azulito/a!!

  8. I’m very glad to hear about your good test results. You go, girl! And I had Braxton Hicks for 6 weeks before I finally had my second daughter, so they don’t necessarily mean anything. (Always) wishing you good luck!

  9. Reading the comments and replies made me feel better. Keep yourself hydrated. That very much could have been the reason. Sending lots of healing vibes your way. No matter what Baby Azulito is staying put whether he/she likes it or not! πŸ™‚

  10. Was going to chime in and say to ask your doc about those contractions but sounds like you’re on it. I had lots of braxton hicks throughout my pregnancy, but they were never painful. Just my whole bump would go hard for a bit. I went to triage a bunch of times for this and that. It was a pain in the butt, but was always glad I went in the end even if it was nothing. For now, drink lots of water and keep those feet up. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you. That was just it – these were not tightening contractions which I have had a little this pregnancy. These were like the ones I had after being on pitocin for a few hours as active labour began with my son – real contractions that hurt and were frightening at this early stage. My RI thinks that if my cervix were shortening I would see bleeding too and without my mentioning fluid intake said hydration is such a huge part of keeping things calm right now. I usually have water or non-caffeinated tea with me at all times. Birthday party in a hot place yesterday… I tried drinking more later but I think the damage was done. Lesson learned!

  11. I’m so glad to hear about your GD test coming back well! Yay! I’m glad you called and hope you hear back about things soon. Sending hugs and love your way!

  12. I’m so happy to hear the good news as you deserve it from all what you have had to deal with already. My AF has arrived and Natural FET cycle has begun!!

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