Today I’m 33 weeks pregnant. This third trimester is absolutely whizzing by and it’s crazy to think that in just seven weeks our little man will be with us and we’ll be a family of four. Since my last pregnancy update, we’ve had a few things going on but thankfully I’m being well looked after and we’re doing well.
I last wrote at 30 weeks that my consultant was concerned that I had too much water around baby boy. During my growth scans, they take some measurements and scan images of my womb and baby boy’s position and on the scan images you can see there are quite large pockets of fluid surrounding him. This extra fluid is amniotic fluid. I was asked to give some more blood samples so they could run some tests and I was told it could be due to an infection, gestational diabetes or simply no known cause.
Thankfully the TORCH screening tests came back all negative and I don’t have any worrying infections. My GTT blood test results came back negative too so I don’t have gestational diabetes either and for some unknown reason I just have extra fluid around baby boy.
At 31 weeks, I saw my midwife for a routine appointment and she said baby boy was head down which was good news. We heard his heartbeat which was super fast (but perfectly normal) and she’d see me again in 4 weeks time.
Last week I was concerned by baby boy’s movements. He had been lying transverse across my tummy but moved head down and his movements felt completely different. I hadn’t felt him in ages on the Friday before he turned 32 weeks so I called triage and went in for monitoring. It’s so worrying when you’re supposed to be counting the kicks and for ages you don’t feel anything at all. After 30 minutes on the monitor, all was well but the midwife asked me to come back to for monitoring 24 hours later and to keep an eye on his movements. All was well at the second monitoring visit but a referral was made for an urgent scan to check LV and doppler which I believe was a volume check and blood flow monitoring of the placenta and cord on the following Monday morning.
I’d love to say it’s not frightening going into a scan to check that your baby’s cord and your placenta are working well, but it is. I found it incredibly worrying. Obviously it’s good to know the state of play but it’s scary just in case they find anything. Thankfully, baby boy was absolutely fine and my placenta and his cord are working well with normal blood flow. The lovely lady who scanned me was friendly and reassuring, she had personal experience of reduced movements so knew how worried I was. She gave me a free scan photo of baby boy which was lovely and I really appreciated her kindness.
At my 32 week scan and review with my consultant, she confirmed I have polyhydramnios. I had a trainee doctor scan me along with a well trained sonographer and she spent a good 25 minutes looking at his growth, taking measurements and checking my water levels. Unfortunately she was a little heavy handed and I felt really bruised after the scan but the good news was baby boy was measuring around 5lb and is right where he should be growth wise! He’s also lying breech in my tummy which could be because of all the extra water, he’s getting plenty of swimming practice in there.
Polyhydramnios is painful. With extra water, my bump is heavy and it feels quite sore. Apparently when my waters break, there’s going to be quite a flood! I’m already receiving consultant led care so know I’ll be giving birth in hospital which for me is hugely reassuring and I need to make a decision about what type of birth I want. My consultant wants to keep an eye on my waters so I’ll be seen again in 2 weeks for another growth scan and review, and we have discussed the possibility of an elective section before his due date for several reasons which I’ll go into another time.
Symptoms of polyhydramnios
Symptoms of polyhydramnios include breathlessness, heartburn and constipation all of which I can confirm are present in my pregnancy so that’s nice! My appetite has reduced too which is bizarre, I can’t eat much in one sitting so have found grazing helps. My tummy also feels a bit numb where the skin is stretching but it doesn’t seem to have given me any major stretch marks (oh so glam eh?)
I finish work next Thursday to start five weeks of annual leave before my maternity leave begins in January and I cannot wait. I’m not sleeping very well at the moment, my back aches and I’m done with rushing around. As much as I’d love to say I’m looking forward to a cheeky lie in, chance would be a fine thing (hello 5am and the school run to do!) It’ll be nice not having to worry about the drive to work or sitting in an uncomfortable chair for hours whilst trying to regulate my temperature which is usually boiling hot when everyone else is cold!
The plan for the next few weeks is to rest as much as possible (which is impossible but I’ll try) keep an eye on baby boy’s movements and hope that the polyhydramnios doesn’t increase much more. Keep your fingers crossed for me!