Progesterone to treat preterm labor? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 11-08-2012, 04:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Anyone have experience or opinions about this?  

  My Midwife wants to discuss the use of progesterone to treat my preterm labor.  

It seems like progesterone is the only real option to treat preterm labor (since terbutaline is not being used anymore, except in short term, extreme situations).  However, from what I've been able to dig up, it seems that it is not actually indicated for women experiencing PTL symptoms, but for those with histories of PTL or those with a short cervix (less than 20mm?).  That's not me, at last ultrasound I measured 38mm, which is great, and therfore I am not considered to be in actual PTL currently, and so they can't really do anything for me.  

Now they're talking about the potential of progesterone, and I'm not really sure how I feel.  Mostly I think, "anything that helps!" but I'm not actually real clear on what the side effects are, or how likely it is to actually *do* anything.  Plus, I'm not sure they're willing to do it unless my cervix shortens, they weren't clear on that, just said it is something we need to consider.  I guess we'll see (next exciting transvaginal ultrasound the day after thanksgiving... happy holidays, right?)

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#2 of 7 Old 11-08-2012, 05:01 PM
 
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Anna - have you had issues of PTL in the past is that why they are even talking about it???  I guess I don't know your history from this post, so that is why I ask.  I am on th P17 progesterone shots weekly now for the past 3 weeks I think it has been to help prevent PTL since we have a history of it. I also had my cervix stitched at 13 wks as well b/c they don't know if our PTL was a cervix issue or if it was a PTL issue or if it was just the fact that I was pregnant w/ twins which might have been too much for my uterus.  My OB and high risk dr are trying to cover all grounds which I appreciate even though it seems like there are way too many "irons in the fire" but I'm just hoping and praying for a healthy take home baby this time.  I"m the same though, I'd rather be safe than sorry.  I have not had any side effects from the progesterone shots other than a little bit of soreness after the shot but not as bad as the PIO shots we had done when we were doing fertility treatments and my husband was giving them to me.  With these ones a nurse comes to the house and gives them to me which is kinda nice.  If you have any questions I might be able to answer just yell and I'll do my best.  Good luck.
 


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#3 of 7 Old 11-08-2012, 05:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh sorry, you're right, that was not clear.  I have not had PTL in the past, I have two successful full term pregnancies.  However this time around (pregnancy number 3) is totally different.  I started having contractions and cramping and spotting around 19 weeks and have been on bed rest since then (about 5 weeks).  My cervix has dilated slightly, but hasn't shortened.  If it does shorten they want to put me on progesterone shots.  If it doesn't I think we can continue with just bed rest.

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#4 of 7 Old 11-08-2012, 05:35 PM
 
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Oh, I see!!!  Wow, sending you good thoughts and prayers that all works out and that the bedrest does the job.  I have heard that the progesterone shots sometimes will help prevent bedrest, but I didn't realize you were into it as far as you are.  If I were in your shoes, I would totally go for the shots if that is what the Dr recommends and maybe they will even get you off bedrest (not that i'm a dr but wishful thinking).  Take care!!!!
 


After 5 failed IUI's & 6 failed IVF's we threw in the towel w/ ART and then got a NATURAL miracle BFP! Hoping and praying it is finally our take home baby!  Mother to our twins boys in heaven -lost at 22.5wks on 6/20/09 and 1 other little angel in heaven.

Our Miracle has arrived... Caden James...

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#5 of 7 Old 11-08-2012, 07:11 PM
 
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I'm pregnant with #3 and had PTL (but not preterm birth) with both my first, so this time I'm going to do progesterone.  The perinatologist I consulted with last week said that the 17P injections have been shown to be useful for women with a history of preterm birth prior to 34 weeks.  The progesterone supplements (crinone gel, in particular) seem to be helpful for women who have gradual cervical shortening.  

 

I'm still trying to figure out what insurance will cover, but most likely I'll be doing the crinone gel.  There really isn't evidence that it's harmful, it's pretty much boosting a hormone that's already present in pregnancy. That's why I'm opting for it.  Another factor for me is that I can't have a homebirth unless I pass 37 weeks, and so far my kids have arrived at 37w0d and 36w6d.  

 

Good luck to you!  Bedrest is brutal, and I can't imagine it with two other children. 

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#6 of 7 Old 11-09-2012, 08:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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The homebirth thing is really a big issue for me, too.  I want my baby to gestate for a good long time, just like my other two, but the thought of having to deliver in the hospital instead of at home as planned adds a lot of stress and disappointment to the already overwhelming thought of delivering prematurely.

 

Honestly, the bed rest is not as bad as I had first thought it would be.  I cannot imagine how awful it would be if my kids were little, but they are 11 and 8.5, so very self sufficient and actually quite helpful.  And my husband has really stepped up, keeps the house neat, cooks everything, drives the kids to and from school and to all their activities.  Unfortunately, he's able to be here to do all of this because he got laid off (same day my contractions started, coincidence, not likely), but I'm grateful to have him here for me  even under such awful circumstances.

 

Even still, I'm only 24 weeks, I have a lot of pregnancy left (hopefully!!), it's kind of terrifying to think about spending all of that on bed rest!  I try to take it little bits at a time.  With the holidays coming up and having to change all our plans completely, it's hard not to feel like a burden on everyone though.

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#7 of 7 Old 11-13-2012, 09:37 AM
 
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I've been on P17 shots since 16 weeks and am having my last one on Wednesday. My water broke at 23 weeks last time (after two full-term pregnancies). I heard that a third thing it does is to strengthen the mucous plug, to make it less likely that an infection will sneak in there and drill a hole in your membranes.

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