Tuesday, April 28, 2009

My first experience with triage...

Today I am 35w6d pregnant. I had my 2nd OB appt here in AZ today, and Mark and our doula, Julie were with me. We had planned on taking a tour of the hospital after our 4pm OB appt.

Got to the OB appt, peed in the cup (and actually hit it!), got weighed (didn't gain anything this week), and then got my BP taken.... It was 151/115. Yikes. I was hoping it would be lower since I didn't feel nervous but obviously I was. So the nurse took it again, and it was something high again over 105... Still way too high. So Dr. Branaman comes in and checks me and I'm 4 and a 1/2 cm dilated, and about a -3 (still not sure what that means - something to do with how low the baby's head is) and 60% effaced. And then she said she was worried about my BP and asked that we go to triage so they could check me out more. At first she said that she wanted us to go straight there and skip our hospital tour, but they took my BP one more time before we left and it was in the normal range, so she said we could go to triage after our tour. (I should add that she said she's especially nervous about this bc they had a patient (mother) die of eclampsia last week and she just didn't want to take the risk.)

I was thinking the hospital tour was going to make me nervous, but it really didn't at all. Our talk with the triage nurse made me WAY more nervous, but more on that later. The hospital seems nice and they seem to have most of the things I'm wanting for the birth (birthing balls, squat bars, mirrors, etc) and they said they do everything to the baby in the room with you if everything goes okay, so that was encouraging too. We'd told the tour guide that we had to go to triage after the tour, and she tried to make us go before, but we assured her that my dr had said that we could do the tour first. During the tour she kept asking if I was okay, and when she took us down to triage after the tour she asked Mark to call her tomorrow and let her know how things went. I thought that was sweet.

So we got to triage around 6:15pm. I had to pee in a cup (hit it again!!), and then I got hooked up to the fetal monitor and the contraction monitor and the pulse rate monitor and the blood pressure machine, and I had to lay on my left side the whole time. That was pretty uncomfortable bc I was bending kinda weird and my ribs started hurting. But I survived. Then the girl came in to take my blood so they could check my kidney and liver functions and she had a hard time finding my vein (partially bc I was dehydrated). Finally she found it and it took FOREVER for my blood to fill up the little thinger. Then when she was putting the blood in the other little vials a clot clogged the needle so she had to poke me again! Grrr! So she took it out of my hand vein and that kinda hurt, moreso than the arm one, but the arm one was uncomfortable since she kept it in so long and kept moving it. Oh well. Again, I survived. They determined that my BP was okay (not great, but okay), and my blood tests and pee tests both came back fine, so they finally let us go around 9:15pm. I felt terrible that Julie was stuck out with us for that long. (She rode with us.)

I think in general, the hospital visit will help in the future, especially since I got the special tour of the triage area. I feel like I know a little more of what to expect now. The thing that did make me worry is that I've been having contractions, and I had NO clue I was. They said I was having them about 10-15 mins apart, but I honestly haven't felt anything. I guess I should say I haven't felt anything painful. The top of my stomach gets hard sometimes, but I really thought that was just her butt or foot or something pushing up, but apparently some of those were probably contractions. I felt one when we were there, where everything got a little hard, but still didn't hurt at all, and the monitor verified that it was a contraction. Now I think everything I feel is a contraction. The other thing that made me worry more than anything else was when I asked the triage nurse (Jen) about having high BP during labor. I'm almost 100% positive that my BP will be high then next time I'm in traige, bc I'll be in labor, and I'll be nervous, and I'll be at the hospital. That's the recipe for my high BP. She said if it's high and the dr's are nervous, they'll make me lay on my left side and keep me on continuous monitoring during my entire labor, which means I'm not going to be able to move around to deal with the pain like I had hoped. I'm not sure I'll be able to do a drug free labor if I'm confined to a bed, on my left side, the entire time. She said even if they do the blood tests and pee tests and everything comes back normal, the dr might still want me on continuous BP monitoring. That'll really throw a wrench into our plans. I'm going to talk to Dr Branaman next week at my appt.

Anyway, that was enough excitement for me for one day... or one week. Mark starts training on Thursday, and everyone seems to think she's going to be early - as in the next week or two - so I don't know. I'd really like to make it to 37 weeks, which is next Wednesday, but we'll see. I'm exhausted now and my head hurts bc my neck is out of whack from laying there for 3 hours, so I'm off to bed. We'll keep you updated! (And I'm not proofing this, so sorry if there are tons of mistakes.)


Em said...

Boo triage! Glad it went okay for you.

I had to be monitored because my water broke so early and they hooked me up to a portable machine. It was on wheels so I could pull it around the room with me. You might ask about that.

-3 means -3 station, it refers to the baby's position above or below where your pubic bones come togther. "-" is above and "+" is below (weird that it's opposite). -3 means that the blueberry is about 3 cm above the point on the bottom of your pubic bone. ... I found a picture here: http://pregnancy.about.com/od/childbirthclasse1/ss/cbeclass2.htm

Jackie said...

Oh friend!! I am sorry you had such an "exciting" day, but like you said, at least now you know where to go, what to expect, and can take it from there. Sounds like you better pack a bag becasue that little girl wants to meet her mommy and daddy!!

If they are willing to let you do the left side thing and not immediately put you on magnesium (that is what happened to me) that will be great. Mag is awful, kinda like being drunk or something.

I wish you the best and can't wait to hear more when it happens!!

Amy said...

Oh wow!!!!! At my hospital we would automatically just go to labor and delivery, no stops at triage. Maybe labor and delivery triage is basically just labor and delivery.

Dont worry, if she were born now she would be just fine!!!

J.A.Scherff said...

Sorry for all the "excitement"! hope that nothing else comes up between now and labor!