Preterm Labor? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 07-29-2008, 05:53 PM - Thread Starter
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So yesterday at my OB apointment, she sent me to L&D because the baby's heartbeat was high. They hooked me up to the monitors for a non-stress test, and turned out I was having regular contractions (2-3 minutes apart). They pumped me full of fluids, trying to get them to stop. But they didn't. Then they gave me a shot (I don't remember what it was called, but wooo! did it hurt!), and the contractions stopped right away.

They told me I am to go into my OB's office again tomorrow for a fetal fibronectin test which will tell them if I am going to go into preterm labor or not.

But now, I am having contractions again, and they are pretty regular. I drank some water and am laying down, but they aren't stopping. Also, whenever I go to the bathroom, when I am done and get up, some 'stuff' leaks out. Its a clear fluid, and does not smell like anything. The baby is also WAY less active then she is normally.

I really don't want to go back to L&D because that shot they gave me was pretty horrible... It made me feel like I drank 1000 cups of coffee! I was so jittery I could hardly eat!

Does anyone have any good advice for preterm labor and its signs? Thanks!
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#2 of 8 Old 07-29-2008, 06:11 PM
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Not to make you worry, but if I were you I would head straight back to L&D. It sounds like you may have a high break and be leaking fluid. More will leak with your activity and contractions, so it may be best to stop them. And your baby may be stressed right now.

I had preterm labor with DD at about 33 weeks and I thought I was just having braxton-hicks! Turns out I was about 2cm and 75% effaced. They gave me steriod shots in the hospital (which hurt like !@#$!!!!!) and terbutaline. I was discharged on bedrest and terbutaline, but had to come back for another steroid shot (for baby's lungs) 24 hours later. When they took me off that med at 37 weeks, I went right into labor. I'm not sure whether they use that med anymore or not...

The good news is that you are pretty far along. However, buying yourself another week or so may be best. But if your baby is stressed you need medical attention ASAP.

Best wishes!

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#3 of 8 Old 07-29-2008, 06:57 PM
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It sounds like the shot they gave you was terbutaline, like the PP described. I took it with my DD, and yes, it is horrible! At nearly 23 weeks, I've had boughts of contractions, and they are threatening me with a more comfortable med-nefedipine.

I agree with Chesapeake-head back to L&D and find out if the leak is fluid. If it is a leak they may well allow you to go ahead into labor.

Another thing you can do-drink a glass of juice, eat something sugary, then sit down quietly and see if you are getting enough movements out of the baby (10 or more in an hour is best, if it's 6 to 8 call your care provider for suggestions, if it's less than 6 plan on heading into L&D no matter what).

If the baby is under stress you'll need to get checked out right away!

"Listen, are you breathing just a little and calling it a life?"~Mary Oliver

RT knitting mama  to 3 (& 8 who didn't make it) wife working on 13 years to a silly man who drives me crazy.
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#4 of 8 Old 07-29-2008, 07:04 PM
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I'd bet a million dollars they gave you terbutaline. I think the opinion of its use varies with many posters here, but when I had PTL with DS it was very effective in reducing (but never stopping) contractions for me. Taking it in pill form (had the shots initially) kept me from having him at 27 weeks until 35. I found the side effects with the pill to be a fraction of what they were in shot form.

I avg'd 6 contractions an hour in my case. Our PTL routine in the hospital was take the pill every 4 hours like clockwork. If I felt I was having more ctx than usual, I doubled up the dosage. I had to drink like a fish, which meant bathroom breaks every 15-20m. I absolutely had to stay in bed the entire time, my only freedom being toilet breaks, a 15-20m shower, and a 1 hour wheelchair ride each day.

We are worried about PTL again with this baby, so to try to ward off PTL we're following a similar routine. Lots of water and bathroom breaks, even more rest and laying down. So far no need for terbutaline...

Don't be surprised if the FFN test comes back positive - what matters is that you and your practitioner have a plan of action you both agree on for either a positive or negative test result.
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#5 of 8 Old 07-29-2008, 07:41 PM
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Is this your first baby? It COULD be normal for you. I've had regular ctx with each child since 32 wks no more than 6 min apart. Right now I've been having them 2-3 min apart since an L&D trip at 33 wks for food poisoning. I was 2 cm and 50%. I got NO meds- just IV fluids. As long as your cervix isn't changing then it's just an irritable uterus (I was put on cal/mag supplements to try and slow the ctx). I'm 36.5 wks and on bedrest still for a few days (since 33 wks). Weird thing- I actually went from 2 & 50% to 1cm and 0% after the supplements , fluids and bedrest.

All that said considering the possible fluid I'd go to L&D. Did they check for dilation yesterday? If so that'd be a good indication whether you're truly in preterm labor or just have a lot of ctx.
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#6 of 8 Old 07-29-2008, 09:04 PM
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Go to L&D if they offer you terbutaline again ask them what other alternatives they have.

I don't think this is a situation you want to mess around with. You need to know whether you have a leak or not, and if your contractions are causing changes I don't think you want to end up birthing a premature baby at home.

Good luck mama, everything should be ok no matter what is going on, but go find out what it is.
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#7 of 8 Old 07-29-2008, 10:47 PM
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I could almost have written your post 2 weeks ago!!!! I also got hooked up to a monitor at a regular appt and discovered I was having ctrx 2 minutes apart. Ooops!

I got the terbutaline shots- 2 of them. They made me a little quivery, but it didn't last long. (Nothing like the reglan (?) shot I had earlier in the pg for dehydration). I also got the steroid shots to help develop baby's lungs. I had the fetal fibronectin test- negative. Finally, I had 3 internal exams over the past 2 weeks and I am not dialating at all and only 50% effaced.

It's pretty clear that my deal is irritable uterus instead of true PTL, but I sure do feel better having those internal exams under my belt. I'm now on procardia once a day to calm the uterus and modified bed rest until I hit 36 weeks.

With leaking fluid, I would go ahead into L&D (or call your HCP)- that's kind of alarming. I would also be curious to know if you're dialating or not. Good luck, mama!

Sleepy mama to Colin Theodore 8-12-08 and Trevor Arthur 7-17-12.



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#8 of 8 Old 07-30-2008, 12:19 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for all your kind words and advice.

About 20 minutes after posting this, I decided to go ahead and call my OB and see what she said. They said to go ahead and go into the L&D. So off we went.

The same nurses were there from yesterday, and they remembered me and hooked me right up to the machines. When I first got in, I was having some serious contractions... for the first time I was like, wow, ok these are serious. They checked my fluid, and thankfully it was not amnionic fluid. They didn't want to give me another cervical exam, because I am due to have the fetal fibronectin test tomorrow morning.

So they watched me for a few, and decided to go ahead and give me the crazy drug (which yes, is terbutaline). Also they gave me the steroid shot for the baby's lungs. Well, the contractions weren't stopping. Holy cow, did the steroid shot hurt!!!! And I hear I have to get another one tomorrow, UGH!

Well, 3 rounds of the terbutaline later, I was still having contractions, but they were about 9-10 minutes apart, and much less in strength. So they said if I was comfortable, I could go ahead and go home considering I am scheduled for the fetal fibronectin test tomorrow. Or they could call the OB and see what she suggests. So I opted to go ahead and go home, as I didn't really want anymore shots!

I can still feel the contractions, but they are not as strong. I'm pretty confident that I will make it through the night, and to my OB apointment tomorrow morning.

I know at this point the baby will more then likely be ok if she decides its her time to join us in the world, and that makes me feel better. But if she could stay in there and cook just a little bit longer that would be really great.

Thanks again for the advice and support!

edit: oh I forgot to add, yesterday when they checked, I was 1 1/2 cm dialated. They did not say how effaced I was though.
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