Friday, April 22, 2011

20 Weeks

Just as I had thought that things were turning round, this past Sunday I had noticed my left leg had swollen to 3 times the size of my right. I automatically began to think of the worse (right down to, "Oh my goodness my leg is going to have to be chopped off!!!")! The Dr's were also puzzled as they did not think it was fluid since only one leg had swollen. I was told it could very likely be a blood clot and they would begin to treat it whether it was or not with a blood  thinning shot twice a day. They wanted to do another CT scan but had to wait 72 hours for the dye to metabolize. The first CT scan did not show a potential clot in my lungs as they did not let the dye sit long enough prior to imaging. I was sent to get an ultrasound of my leg where they noted the major veins and arteries and then squeezed down to see if a clot had formed. The only issue is that the ultrasound does not take view of the pelvis where a blood clot could be very likely.

As we waited for Wednesday to arrive to get some answers as to what caused my leg to swell; my heart rate and pneumonia were still being monitored and treated. Amongst the several EKGs I had done on my high heart rate, they also placed a heart monitor on to track my heart beats and rythms. I also had an ECHO done to make sure there were no abnormalities (other than the stress my heart was under to pump the 100% increase in blood volume due to the quads). Besides the what I felt like was "elephantitis" in my leg, I was finally beginning to feel like my pregnant self. The time seemed to go by so much faster with Jeff's mother and my mamma to keep me company (I haven't picked up one crossword of Sudoku puzzle yet!)!!!

 I had reached my two week mark and was looking forward to many more "anniversaries".  The heart monitor was taken off and the findings from it along with the other tests had shown that I had tachycardia but it was normal for me and my pregnancy situation. I went for the CT scan where I ensured that they covered my belly (all of it) with the lead aprons as best as possible to shield my boys from radiation. Knowing that the dye did not sit long enough during the prior scan, I asked and asked to ensure they allowed the dye to sit so I did not have the scan and potentially expose my children to unnecessary radiation.. They assured me that all was scanned well. It barely took an hour for my Dr to come and tell me the results....inconclusive. Yet again, the dye was not allowed to sit long enough to see all parts of the lungs to conclude if I had a blood clot stemming from my lung or not; I was frustrated to say the least.  Directly after the CT, I had an ultrasound of my right leg as it began to swell as well (Really??? Elephantitis in both legs now!!!?). They did the same type of ultrasound as was done with my left and the results came back negative. Although we still don't know if a blog clot has is at fault; my Dr's felt that it was very likely the culprit. Now I will do the shot twice a day throughout the entire pregnancy with an additional six weeks after birth of the boys. The shot is suppose to help dissipate the blood clots (wherever they may be) as well as prevent from any more clots from forming. My legs are still gargantuan in my eyes; but this is yet another small price for the ultimate reward; four beautiful boys!!!!!!

That same night our nurse came into my room and told me they were sending me to another floor for more monitoring... "What??? This has become my home; I am finally use to the nurses and my surrounding and do not want to go anywhere else!!!" I instantly wanted to speak to my Dr to hear for myself what is going on. Three hours of long waiting and I was informed that the labor and delivery floor had admitted too many women and were extremely understaffed and short beds (The labor and delivery floor has downsized drastically with the upcoming move to the Army hospital. I was told that the women arriving were going into delivery or were not stable; and since I was stable with the pregnancy I would be temporarily moved until a bed opened back up. As much as I understood the predicament; I did not understand how they would move a severe high risk pregnancy who has encountered one too many complications to a floor who knew nothing on providing care to someone like me. I had allowed myself to become angry. I reluctantly moved and survived the first night in the foreign room thanks to my mom. Sleep was even more nonexistent as I had to take my medical care into my own hands to ensure I was receiving the correct medications at the correct time (good thing I was extremely knowledgeable on all my medications for pregnancy, contractions, and IV antibiotics for the pneumonia!)! I was at ease knowing this stay would only last a couple of we thought. The next morning, a never before seen OB did our daily ultrasound which was a far cry from being thorough (the purpose of the daily ultrasounds are to ensure the babies heart rates are on target and that the fluid surrounding them is appropriate since one of the contraction medicines can be harmful). She also told us that we could go home...go home??? How could I go home with every complication that we have encountered; on top of that we were told from the beginning we were not leaving)! I did not know what to think! Not to mention I told her my concern for more than usual contractions which she said she would bring me back downstairs to monitor or bring up a monitor; neither happened. This was my concern with moving floors; out of sight out of mind

Later that day one of  Jeff's higher ups came for a visit and was confused as to why we were not on the labor and delivery floor; he was told that I had a heart condition and required extra care that they could not provide...this was knew to me!!!!! He left with the intention of getting to the bottom of it all, ensuring adequate care was provided. A few hours later and several of Jeff's bosses showed up with an intent. Patient advocacy contacted the fifth floor and an hour later we got answers; but not comforting ones. To back up a bit; the entire hospital is being moved to the Army hospital, the floor I was moved to has 4 open beds and is a surgical unit; no knowledge of maternity or of quad complicated pregnancies for that matter. One of the high risk Dr's told us that if I were to stay in the hospital than they feared that I would contract a hospital illness and they felt that I would be safer at home....One could imagine the uneasiness I was feeling. How can it go from Dr's being adamant that I stay on hospital bed rest for close monitoring especially with the cervical issues and contractions I have experienced to I could go home for bed rest; I was baffled to say the least. I have to finish out the IV antibiotics for the pneumonia and come Saturday (tomorrow) I would finish out the IV meds and move to oral meds. They want to see how I respond to the oral meds and have a full examination by a high risk Dr on Sunday and then I would be discharged for at most 3 weeks (or when I am 24 weeks pregnant). I would give myself the two pills every 6 hours for contractions (checking my blood pressure prior to ensure it is not too low to take one of the pills which primarily serves as a blood pressure med but works to control contractions as well) on top of the oral meds and vitamins and supplements and in addition to the two shots of the blood thinner medicine to treat the suspected blood clots. I can not help but to feel that I am being sent home for this short time due to the lack of beds and nurses at this hospital because of the transition to the other military hospital (so much so that a nurse on this floor had said the same).

With all of the reservations and concerns I have with going home, I would rather be at home being  responsible for my own care than on a floor who is completely clueless and unconcerned as they have no idea of how to care for me. Just as I find myself being dragged into the doldrums of worry, I have to remind myself of where we started and who has been in control this entire time. The Dr's and nurses do what they do with a guided hand; my care and the boys' well doing is ultimately being controlled by God. I have trust and faith that all will be well; this too is just another bump in the road that He has pre planned for us.

The boys at week 20

1 comment:

  1. Oh girl!! I am so sorry you are having to go through all this!! What a crazy week you have had!! I'm thinking about you and those boys and praying that this next week holds better health for you and continued growth for those boys!!! Glad that your mom and mother in law were both able to come be with you. Moms do somehow make the world a better place no matter what is going :-) hang in there and I look forward to better health report with your next update :-)
    Happy easter !!