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How well do preemies do at 33-34 weeks?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
I am having some problems with my placenta (bloddclot 2-3 cms big) so I will have to deliver early they are thinking 33-34 weeks (if I make it that far I have preterm labor a lot) I am now 26 weeks as of Thursday but I need to know how well a 33-34 week preemie any of you had any experiences with this? I am worried but not as worried as if he were born now...How long did your baby stay in the Nicu or do they normally do well? Please anything to make me feel better...OH and I had steroids to mature his lungs at 24 weeks will I need to get more or are those good enough?
post #2 of 22
I have a 36wkr, 29wkr and 25wkr all of which are doing well and thriving. At 33-34wks your baby will probably be around 4lbs and may have trouble controlling their body temperature. Most likely intubation won't be necessary and all the baby will need is CPAP (positive airway pressure through the nose) or a nasal cannula with a little oxygen, if anything at all.
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thank you I have a 36 weeker and she did well after a few days she was on oxygen and IV and wasn't doing very well at first but is doing pretty well now although she is quite sickly I guess that was worrying me too
post #4 of 22
It is not too early. Just relax, the chances of your baby being okay are good. Twins are delivered that early all the time. The best thing you can do is just tell your body to wait, and relax. Your baby will be fine.
post #5 of 22
My ds is a 34 weeker. He spent 2 weeks in the nicu. No major issues, just growing and learning to maintain his temp. He is now 21 mos and is 100% caught up and is doing wonderfully!
post #6 of 22
My son was born at 34 weeks and had zero issues. He was released from the hospital with me. We had no oxygen or NICU stay.
post #7 of 22
I had a 34 weeker. She had to have a blood transfusion at about 3 weeks. She was on high flow O2 for one day, off for 2 weeks on regular O2 for 4 weeks. She had a's and B's. She actually moved into her open crib at about 3 weeks old. She had a very hard time learning to suck swallow and brethe, which is why we were there past her due date. PM me if you need to chat or want more info.

Any luck on the doctor front?
post #8 of 22
What they all said. I love taking care of the 33-34 weekers though they don't tend to stay in our NICU very long (we have a step down unit where they work on breastfeeding, growing etc.) SOme need a bit of ventilatory support right at the beginning especially if they haven't been steroided. Usually they are weaned to room air very quickly. SOmetimes BF'ing is an issue due to not-so-strong cheek muscles and poor suck swallow breathe coordination. They often omit the breathing part.

Good luck! I hope you have a strappingly huge, healthy baby!
post #9 of 22
I had a 30 week baby, he came home before his due date. He had some inguinal hernias but other wise he is fine.
Thirty four weeks sounds good.
Glad to hear you made it this far after reading your other thread!
post #10 of 22
I had a 34 weeker and a 36 weeker. Luckily neither had any problems and came right home with me. My 36 weeker did have an hour in NICU for observation of her retracted breathing, but they were pretty sure it was caused by being born so quickly - and it was. She was fine. At 34 weeks it can go either way, but most 34 weekers don't have too long in the hospital if they have to stay there.
post #11 of 22
I had a 34 weeker and she stayed in the NICU for 21 days...3 weeks. She only needed oxygen for 2 days. Our biggest obstacles were feeding and apnea problems. We think the apnea was reflux related though. She was 6lbs at birth.
post #12 of 22
My third DD was born at 34 weeks, 0 days. She was 6 pounds at birth. I had betamethasone (steroid) injections at 31 weeks, but she was still born with mild RDS, needed one dose of surfactant, spent one day on CPAP and about a day and a half on a nasal cannula. After that she was on room air. She was in the NICU for a total of 11 days, basically just getting the hang of eating. She never had any apnea episodes.

A NICU stay of 1 to 3 weeks seems pretty average for 34 weekers. The big thing at this age, assuming their lungs are pretty close to mature, is the coordination of sucking, swallowing and breathing. Some are born OK with that and it takes other babies several weeks to get the hang of it. That will likely be the big factor in determining length of NICU stay.

I would advise pumping right away to get your milk supply going since a lot of 34 weekers do not have a strong suck. I worked with the NICU LCs from the get go. They helped me a lot. I needed to use a nipple shield for about 3 weeks to help her latch. After she hit about 38 weeks gestation, it was fairly straightforward to wean her off the shield. I worked with LLL and the hospital LCs again and they helped me with that.
post #13 of 22
Adara was born at 33w3d and 4# 1oz. She needed CPAP for less than 30 minutes, and that was mostly precautionary.

She camehome after 8 days.

My son was born at 34w6d and 5# 13oz. He needed nothing and came home immediately.

Best of luck!
post #14 of 22
Thread Starter 
thank you all I feel a little better but I am still worried I hope my son does as well as most of your babies have done...Will I need another set of steroid shots or is that far enough along to where you don't need them? I got the shots to mature his lungs at 24 weeks is that enough?
post #15 of 22
Originally Posted by mommyof2soon2b3 View Post
thank you all I feel a little better but I am still worried I hope my son does as well as most of your babies have done...Will I need another set of steroid shots or is that far enough along to where you don't need them? I got the shots to mature his lungs at 24 weeks is that enough?
Research is fairly mixed on this one. I had shots at 28 weeks, and DD did fine. There is new research out of Australia saying that a second dose does no harm and helps lungs. There was a concern the second dose would be bad for mom....

article reference

post #16 of 22
I had a 32 weeker and she was 4lbs 12 oz. She was in the hospital for 2 weeks, mostly to just get stronger. She did go home with apnea issues related to eating that caused her to stop breathing about 1/day for about 2 months. What I really wished I had known was that I would become very intimate with the pump. Her suck was weak and caused her to stop breathing and become weak, so in order to get her home we had to bottle feed (this continued for about a month) and I had to pump. I think that it would have been easier if I had been mentally prepared for around the clock pumping.
post #17 of 22
I had a 34 weeker (34w4d) and though we all stayed in the hospital an extra day he came right home with us. No breathing problems, mostly body temp and feeding trouble.

Establishing a good nursing was hard and yes reflux has been a challenge but he's going strong at almost 11 mo (9.5 adjusted) and I feel grateful every day for him.
post #18 of 22
Hi, Erika:

My b/g twins were born at 34 weeks and are now two happy, healthy 4-month olds. I was hospitalized for most of the last 6 weeks of my pregnancy for pre-eclampsia and had problems starting with week 15 for PIH - bleh. I did receive the steroid shot, but I can't remember when as there was just too many hospitalizations and assorted junk to keep track of after a while. I know the worry that stays with you all the time as you hope to maintain your pregnancy for as long as possible.

My son stayed in the NICU for several weeks due to problems mainly with bradycardia and feeding (he also had several other, more minor problems). My daughter was in the NICU for about a week as she had problems feeding intially and then regulating her temperature. Once home, they both blossomed, with my son gaining 8 ounces in the first 3 days. As I said, they are now happy, healthy little tots, although their development is a bit delayed, even more perhaps than for their adjusted age. I'm not overly concerned because they make their milestones; they just need a little more time.

As the posts show, there's a huge variation in the outcomes for babies at this stage. One wonderful thing for us was that the NICU staff, from the receptionist to the nurses to the neonatalogists to the custodians, could not have been more supportive, understanding, or kinder. It was a stressful time, but we felt very comfortable knowing that our twins were getting the best possible care.

Looking at my two smiling, chubby babies, I can easily say things turned out all for the best, even if there may be some bumps in the road along the way. Hang in there and the best of luck to you and your babe!
post #19 of 22
My ds was born at 33wks 1 day after PPROM at 32wks. I had the steroid shots when I was admitted after my water broke. He weighed 5lbs 0.6ozs at birth and while he initially did breath on his own, he had to be intubated and put on the ventilator pretty much right away. He was on the vent for 7hrs, the last 3 or 4 of which was just supportive in case he needed it, then he went straight to room air.

He spent 15days in the NICU. His main challenge was feeding and he also needed to be taken off his caffeine that they'd given him just in case when they extubated him. He came home at 35wks 2 days.

At our hospital, it's typical for 32/33weekers to come home around 35 or 36 wks at the earliest. Although if ds had been feeding on his own, we would've been home sooner because they did the car seat test at 34wks 5 days.

(I was born at 34wks and my mom didn't have steroid shots and I came home with my mom when she was released, so it just really varies by baby I think.)
post #20 of 22
Big hugs to you momma! Of course every child is different & there are so many variables, but most likely your little babe will be just fine 34 weeks is good.

Damien was born at 32 weeks and weighed 4lbs, 5oz (a biggie!). He had to be on supplemental oxygen for about a week, but never had to be on a respirator. Our biggest hurdles were regulating body temperature, heart rate & breathing & learning how to eat without the gavage tube.

Damien stayed in the NICU for 4 weeks, so he went home well ahead of his due date. They will tell you as a general rule that your baby will be in the NICU until their due date, but it just depends.

If you'd like some info about how to survive the NICU and some things to do to make it easier (like bringing a shirt you wore so your DC can have it in their isolette) let me know. I am more than happy to elaborate on my experience.

Damien is now a very happy & healthy 8 month old. You'd never know he was 2 months premature.

Big hugs to you & it will be ok
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