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Sunday, December 19, 2010

15 More Days...Maybe...

I could seriously injure someone at the lab of my OB's office for not getting me the results of my blood work by the end of Friday.  That's why I'm up worrying at 4AM on a Sunday when I could be sleeping in.

So here's the latest.  My platelet count appears to be low, which is called Gestational Thrombocytopenia.  (I'm aware that this now makes me sound like a gestational hypochondriac, but whatever.)  So a normal platelet count would be 150,000 to 400,000.  Last Wednesday, the 8th, when they drew blood my platelet count was 82,000.  He said that it's just caused from pregnancy and will go back up after the baby is born, and it doesn't affect the baby at all.  

So the only reason this really matters is because it affects my C-section.  I'll most likely have to be put under for the surgery instead of getting a spinal or epidural.  According to that article I linked to, the reason is because if your platelets are low, then your blood doesn't clot well, so there's a risk of an "epidural hematoma" which can lead to neurological complications (that's probably worst case scenario, though).  My OB wants to see how much my platelet count dropped in one week (9 days actually).  If it dropped significantly (which it most likely didn't), then they'd take the baby early.

Although it really sucks, I'm okay with being put under for the surgery if that means I'll be safest.  I'm totally not into risk when it involves my life like that.  I'm just really bummed that 1) I'll be the last person there to see my little Isaac when he's born; 2) I'll be all groggy and weird from waking up out of anesthesia to see him for the first time, and I probably won't even remember it; 3) making plentiful amounts of milk is not my strong suit, so not being able to nurse in the first hour after birth will set me back a bit.

I guess I'll just have to come up with a good game-plan for Michael to follow while he's waiting for me to come out of anesthesia.  I know skin-to-skin contact is something I want for Isaac, which Michael will facilitate.  He did it with Levi, and I believe it helped get us off to a good start.  Beyond that, I don't really know what to plan for.  I just know what I don't want them to do (i.e. feed the baby without me or give him a pacifier).

Is there anything I'm not thinking of?

P.S.  As I'm aware that having a newborn has a stress load of it's own, I'm looking forward to ending the chapter of my life containing the pregnancy stress load.  It feels more out-of-control and helpless than the newborn stress load.


  1. I'm so sorry that you're having to go through this, Annie! If it were me, I would probably try to hand express or pump a small amount of colostrum now. That way Michael will have it, and if the nurses or pedi are freaking out that he doesn't nurse right away, he'll be able to finger feed or syringe feed the baby a little bit.

    Also, I know that it freaks a lot of people out, but have you thought about placenta encapsulation? I really felt like it has helped my milk supply a TON. I was willing to do anything for a better supply than I had with Alora, and it certainly has helped. Xav is still small for his age, but there is no shortage of milk. That's just the way my kids are. I'll email you a link. I really hope that everything is perfect for you!

  2. I had a client that had GT. She labored naturally but eventually ended up with a section, for which she was put under general anesthesia. Everything turned out great. Her husband did skin-to-skin while she was still in surgery (he was in their LDR room)and then she was able to nurse as soon as she was back in the room. Was she out of it? You bet, but she was able to get baby to latch with the help of me and the nurse holding and positioning the baby while she snoozed. You may want to discuss that with the nurse or LC at the hospital where you're delivering. Nursing in the first hour is more important for bonding than feeding so the amount of milk(colostrum) you're making at that point doesn't really matter.

    Ditto on the placental encapsulation. I know several folks that it's worked wonders for as far as milk supply goes.

    Praying for you and sweet Isaac!

  3. Kara, that's a good idea. I'll wait to hand express it until right before I go in, though, so that I don't go into labor from it. I think it would take a lot to express it since I'm not leaking at all right now (I never do, though). I need to ask Mellanie how long they'll go before feeding them.

    Katherine, your comment is actually really encouraging because it gives me a real picture of what it will look like. I know that baby isn't getting much in that first hour, but Diana West (Making More Milk) always says that the first hour after birth is when you produce the most prolactin receptors, so she harps on nursing in the first hour a lot, which is where I get that from.

    And about placenta encapsulation, I'm actually considering it; can you believe it? Haha. Here are my main concerns: How do you tell your "mainstream" doctor that you want to take your placenta home? And how do they even facilitate that while you're asleep and your husband is totally grossed out by the whole deal?

    I've asked the girls on my low milk supply forum if any of them have tried it with more success than other galactagogues (my favorite being Fenugreek). So I'll see what they say. I do like the idea of it helping with PPD, too. We'll see!

  4. I've thought about it a little more, and I'm pretty sure I'm just going to stick with what I know works (Fenugreek) and bypass the encapsulation. I don't want to add another thing to my plate (financially and otherwise). So I kind of feel relieved that it's one less thing I have to think of.


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