Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Monoamniotic Twin Boys Success Story

      My name is Abby and I delivered mono mono twin boys on November 26 and wanted to share our story.  I found out I was pregnant on Mother's Day 2013 after going through a miscarriage. I went in to see my OB a week later and had an ultrasound to date the pregnancy. At that ultrasound the tech saw one sac, one placenta, and one heart beat, so we assumed there was one baby-little did we know there were actually two, one just hiding behind the other! I continued going to my regular appointments throughout the summer and each time we listened to one heart beat! I thought I was having a normal singleton pregnancy except for the fact that I had such horrendous morning sickness and I was showing much faster than I did with my first son, Jack.

     At 20 weeks I went in for the big ultrasound-my husband and I were so excited to find out if the baby was a boy or a girl! That's when we got the surprise of our lives! And by the look on the ultrasound tech's face so did she! We were actually expecting twin boys! I didn't have a doctors appointment scheduled until the next week so we went home and were shocked, but so happy to learn we'd be adding two more bundles of joy to our family!

     We had a wonderful weekend celebrating and then on Monday, my doctor called and explained that she could not see a membrane in my ultrasound photos and what that means. I was devastated. I made an appointment with a perinatologist and after several more ultrasounds it was confirmed that our boys were definitely monoamniotic. I was so scared, especially having had a miscarriage right before this pregnancy!

     My husband and I met with my new high risk doctor and we decided that I would check in to the hospital at 24 weeks for my inpatient stay. It was unbelievably hard to leave my son who was then 18 months old, but my mom took a family medical leave from the university where she works and took care of him! I was lucky enough that I was able to work from the hospital, which gave me something to do while I was there. I also finished writing my dissertation while inpatient. I have to say that I really learned what amazing people I have in my life during that hospital stay! I didn't go one day without a visitor in 10 weeks and people brought me books, DVDs, and crafts to keep me from going crazy! My sister came up every Friday night and we'd have a slumber party-eat pizza and watch movies! Between my husband and my mom, they got my son up to see me almost every day!

     I was on intermittent monitoring (1 hour out of every 4) with ultrasounds every two weeks right up until the very end. Two days before the boys were born, we finally had some bad tracings on the monitor and I was kept on 24 hour monitoring. It was very scary-twice during the middle of the night doctors and nurses rushed in and rolled me over onto my side. Both times the boys heart rates recovered, thank god! The second time they actually put in an IV and got me into a hospital gown!

     The next night I started having regular contractions. They started getting more painful and were coming every 2 minutes. I called my husband who got my parents over to our house to stay with Jack and he made it to the hospital just in time. Since we were trying to get to 34 weeks and we were 33 weeks and 5 days, the OB didn't see any point to stop my labor and they went ahead and prepped me for my c-section. They wheeled us down to the operating room and they were all so calm-it was very reassuring! Plus, I knew all the doctors and nurses so well by then that they were more like friends than doctors!

     The boys were born within one minute of each other-Henry at 4:57 and Oliver at 4:58 AM and they were 5 pounds 1 ounce and 5 pounds 6 ounces respectively, which I'm told are great weights for that gestational age. Their cords were a mess-they were all braided around each other with one true knot! They did absolutely wonderful! They were off oxygen by the end of the first day and needed no other interventions-they just had to learn to eat and grow. They came home exactly two weeks later. The NICU stay was the hardest part of the entire ordeal-it was very hard to leave the hospital without my babies. Luckily they did so well and we had them home for Christmas! They are such blessings and this has truly been the best holiday season ever!