baby having in-utero seizures? uterus spasming? - Mothering Forums

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Old 04-20-2009, 03:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't know why I haven't run across this before, but seems to be somewhat common according to my Googling:

mom, 31 weeks, feels very strong flutters, "slower than a vibration," faster than hiccups. Movements visible from the outside. Happens mostly at night, off and on for 20 minutes or so.

The googling seems to indicate it could be uterine spasms, but mom seems fairly convinced its the baby, not her uterus, that's moving.

Input?

"If you only knew how many things I want to say and don't, you'd give me some credit."
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Old 04-20-2009, 04:08 PM
 
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I have no actual input other than to say sometimes it is best to trust the moms intuition. We had one mom due who kept telling us that her uterus or the baby was popping(yes..like popping your knuckles). We told mom she must be mistaken and it must be her back or something else. Baby was born hips and everything else looks fine. We get a call a few hours after the birth at the first diaper change and the baby's left knee pops. Loudly! It was happening in utero as well. So no real advice other than to not ignore what mom says. Good luck on your search.

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Old 04-20-2009, 05:40 PM
 
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Seems like it would be easy enough for the baby to get a neuro workup after the birth....

A few years back a patient of mine delivered a baby who was eventually diagnosed as having hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. A few days after the birth she described very articulately what sounded like in utero seizures, from 28 weeks on. If she had mentioned it I would have recommended a hospital birth. In utero seizure activity certainly isn't something I routinely ask about.
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Old 04-20-2009, 07:30 PM
 
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DD did this! I kept telling people she was vibrating...people kept trying to convince me she was hiccuping or whatever...I told them..its vibrating!

She did it, and still does it today. You know when you tense your muscles so tight that you can make them shake...she does it. When she gets excited, or angry - she tenses and her muscles shake. I have decided this is what she was doing in utero as when she does it it looks exactly how I think it would feel from the inside.

She also gets the waky shakes..when she first wakes up (she needs to eat right away). I imagine sometimes she woke up in utero and was "hungry" and shook then too.

So in my case it wasnt a bad thing..but it certainly drove me nuts. Just an anecdote for you - no professional here.

Lindsay: DS#1 (06/06) DD#1 (09/07) DS#2 (10/08) DD#2 (06/09). AND A BABY DUE NOVEMBER 2013

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Old 04-20-2009, 07:38 PM
 
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probably would be good to get a non-stress test now and a perinatal consult -
a baby that isn't having hiccups but is having seizures points to quite a degree of problems-
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Old 04-20-2009, 07:43 PM
 
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that is surely something i would get looked at. it could be nothing big deal... but seizuring in utero is a big deal. I would want to know if that is what was happening if it was me.

transtichel.gifMom of three - (2.5 yrs, 7yrs, and 11yrs). Birthing Doula, editor, and wife to my soulmate. I've had a c/s, hospital VBAC, UC and not yet decided what I'll do about this next little one

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Old 04-20-2009, 09:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Here are a few links of women complaining of what sounds like the same thing. It seems as if most ob's and midwives either say its due to the immature nervous system, or that its "nothing," or that its something silly like the baby "shaking free" of something (sounds crazy to me, its not like they're in there wrestling with sheets of tar paper).

http://www.epilepsy.com/blogentry/971302

http://www.mothering.com/discussions.../t-349437.html

http://www.medhelp.org/posts/Materna...me/show/306077

http://forum.baby-gaga.com/about334606.html

I don't want to jump the gun on this, make her worry, put her through testing etc. if its really nothing. My gut says its nothing to worry about. But of course no one knows the consequences of being wrong in this situation.

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Old 04-20-2009, 10:27 PM
 
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you can do a non-stress test yourself- if you want, but any mom who is telling me that she knows it is not hiccups and is already concerned and I don't blow that off- I suggest that we could test and that we could consult if she wants- and then she can decide- I see and know that it could just be some type of repetative muscle movement but have also come across that unfortunate other situations--- here we are told to do movement counts and to take into consideration increase or decrease in those patterns- this would basically be an increase in movement-
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Old 04-21-2009, 01:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, it would be exaggerating to say she is "concerned." She sounded more curious. It was one of those, "Oh, I forgot to mention this the other day, but..." type comments over the phone that could have been any little quirk of pregnancy. (Except that I'd never heard of it.) She says the baby DOES get hiccups, but these particular movements are surely not hiccups.

I will do a non-stress test next time I see her and tell her consult/ultrasound is an option.

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Old 04-21-2009, 12:50 PM
 
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The other possibility is benign neonatal sleep myoclonus.
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Old 04-21-2009, 01:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for that tip Carolynn, I'm looking into it.

"If you only knew how many things I want to say and don't, you'd give me some credit."
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Old 04-21-2009, 04:22 PM
 
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yep thanks Carolyn -- i kept having myoclonus in my mind but it was just hovering couldn't think of it fully or even remember the right term
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Old 04-22-2009, 12:17 AM
 
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Hmm, you know, I've felt something like this and wondered what was going one. But the baby's quit doing it and is making larger movements. But it has been in the last month. I'm 34/35 weeks. I wondered because it does feel seizing, but for some reason I haven't been concerned. It would only be a few seconds, not very long.

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Old 05-07-2009, 02:54 PM
 
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This topic is very familiar to me as I had the same thing when I was pregnant with my now 17 year old Autistic son. My iron was very very low and the midwife kept telling me I did not need any prenatal vitamins as long as I ate well. I was so out of breath that I could not even talk without gasping for air. I had to sit down several times just to make it through the grocery store. My heart fluttered all the time. I thought maybe my sugar was off as I had no medical knowledge at the time. When I had the sugar test and they told me I had no Diabetes. I just sat in the hall of the doctor's office and cried. I kept telling them something was very wrong. They told me I was just an older mother. (35 yrs old). I had to pull my car into a parking lot that day on the way home from the clinic and I just put my seat back in the car and fell asleep right there. But before I did my stomach did that trembling thing it had started doing. It felt like my baby was having a seizure. I had seen people have seizures and I could not imagine anything else it could be. It definitely came from the baby. It had happened several times before. Finally a couple of weeks before the baby was born they took my blood and measured my iron level. The only other time they did this was very early in my pregnancy at 6 weeks. They told me it was a 23 (hemoglobin or hematocrit I'm not sure?) and wondered why I was not having palpitations and shortness of breath. I told them that I had complained of this and no one would listen. I was put on high iron supplements and in a very short time I started feeling much better. I read that low iron can affect your babies brain development. I told the midwife this better not hurt my baby. She said don't worry it only affects the mother. I almost passed out pushing him out without any supplemental oxygen as my blood levels were still very low. For the final few pushes the midwife finally told the nurse to give me some oxygen. She did not seem to think I really needed it and said I was fine but I kept telling them I was going to pass out. I was embarrassed because I felt like a wimp. Both my births were natural and I did not think I was being a wimp. Long story short I delivered a blue baby with terminal bradycardia that was ambu bagged to consciousness from his lack of oxygen at birth. He had shoulder dystocia and the cord around his neck two times. He started having problems early and I was told after some years of hell that he had Autism. Was it from the birth or from the seizures he seemed to have in side of me. Were these apparent seizures because he did not have enough oxygen in my uterus? Was it the inoculations with the lead that added insult to injury. Was it antibiotics that made him thrash around in his crib like he was insane until I told the doctor I would not give them to him anymore. Was it genetic. I want to be fair. Maybe it was a combination of all these things. I mention the other complications so other mothers can compare any similar complications. If all these other preventable things had not happened I would have been able to accept this with more grace. But now I have to wonder if I missed something. My heart always breaks because if I was more insistent. Maybe I could have saved him. I will never know if I could have helped. If this story helps someone else it was worth telling. Sorry it was so long.
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Old 05-07-2009, 09:34 PM
 
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I just learned about this while teaching the nursing students on the postpartum floor this semester. We had a baby who was having tremors, they would increase when we tried to do the reflexes. When i went to talk to the mom to get a history, she said she had felt that in the womb and they had done several ultrasounds. The ultrasounds didn't show anything unusual.

I know with this mom, they tested the baby for drugs/alcohol at birth (through mec and urine). Baby and mom were clean.

I find this interesting. If I heard about it, I would probably think hiccups or something, but after seeing this case, I definitely think there's something to it. And I think the answer is simply that we don't know.
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Old 05-08-2009, 06:05 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maggi315 View Post
I just learned about this while teaching the nursing students on the postpartum floor this semester. We had a baby who was having tremors, they would increase when we tried to do the reflexes. When i went to talk to the mom to get a history, she said she had felt that in the womb and they had done several ultrasounds. The ultrasounds didn't show anything unusual.

I know with this mom, they tested the baby for drugs/alcohol at birth (through mec and urine). Baby and mom were clean.

I find this interesting. If I heard about it, I would probably think hiccups or something, but after seeing this case, I definitely think there's something to it. And I think the answer is simply that we don't know.
My sixth child did this and it always felt so creepy to me - nothing I ever felt with the others and when she was born it was just as you mentioned - she would stretch and quiver. That lasted for a long time - don't recall exactly how long because she is 10 yrs old now, but it was there for awhile because I remember my older kids mentioning it when she was a little older.
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Old 05-11-2009, 12:51 AM
 
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FWIW, this is very common. I'm pregnant now and experiencing the same thing and on at least two other birth boards there are posts about this at least ever single day. I can provide you links to literally dozens of pregnant women who are currently seeing/feeling this exact same thing. Most of them seem to think it is the baby doing practice breathing although I'm a bit doubtful of that. Either way, it is a common happening for pregnant women.
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Old 05-12-2009, 07:04 AM
 
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If it keeps happening... I'd do the NST. My sister had this happen all throughout her pregnancy. When they did the NST at the hospital, it was "borderline" and they weren't sure if they should clear her for a HB or not. They ended up clearing her since there wasn't anything obviously, terribly wrong and the U/S was ok...
They ended up having to transfer for a c/s after 5 hours of trying to push but not quite pushing b/c the baby kept rolling around and arching her head/neck back in the birth canal, kept presenting chin first even after multiple attempts to straighten her out. Then when they transferred, the OB who was on call for the MW got into an accident, so it was the resident OB who took the case, and he was NOT into listening to the MW-- Took the L&D ward 45 minutes to even get a fetal monitor going, at which point the baby's HR was in the 30's. Crash section, bad things happened. The baby has cerebral palsy, epilepsy, and about 3 or 4 subsequent/connected problems. The CP is that type that is associated with first trimester injury/insult, not hypoxia/brain damage during delivery, but that didn't stop the OB from blaming it on the attempted homebirth.

I'm just saying, it's something to keep in mind. It might be common, and it might be nothing to worry about-- but it could also be a warning sign.
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