This is a minor paranoia-while-waiting-for-results type of post.
First trimester screening (nuchal translucency) showed a nasal bone but our measurement was 4.0mm, in the 99th percentile. We did two sets of blood tests but have to wait about a week for the results and then decide if we want to do any invasive testing.
This is frustrating. On the one hand, I’ve seen the stats and there appears to be a 70% chance that there will be absolutely nothing wrong with the baby, which is good and hopeful. On the other hand, I’ve been working so hard to get the diabetes where it needs to be, that this seems like a kick in the gut and just unfair. It’s much more likely due (if it can be blamed on anything other than dumb luck) on my “advanced maternal age” rather than the diabetes.
The doctor said these results could indicate heart problems, which she said are more common in diabetic pregnancies. She’s not one that inspires a lot of hope, but I am very confident that she knows what she’s doing (and I know enough to do research to see what the other perspectives are).
My biggest fear is that if it comes to the worst case scenario (worst case for me is not a manageable chromosomal disorder), then I feel like the experience would be so traumatic and also potentially more likely to occur again (given my heightened risk factors of age, diabetes, etc.) that I wouldn’t want to risk this happening again and would give up any dreams of pregnancy.
Sorry…I just needed to vent this somewhere, and you all have been a supportive group. Hopefully, it will be nothing.
Thinking of you. I hope it is a false alarm. In the worst case scenario - no one knows what the odds will be for sure if you want to get pregnant again in the future. Pregnancy is biological perfection and thus also a crapshoot of sorts. I hope everything works out for you. Hugs
I’m definitely thinking positive thoughts! My wife and I had a difficult, high-risk pregnancy ourselves last year, and at some point we just decided to not do any more testing other than the regular OB appointments and ultrasounds ask called for by the doctor. We were both too nervous, too apt to suspect something (anything, everything) horrible, and it just got to be too much. We also figured it was our only chance for some of the same reasons: age, other risk factors, genetics, etc. Worried about everything from Tay Sachs to other chromosomal disorders, to… you name it, we worried about it.
Fortunately, having no money meant we couldn’t afford the invasive and genetics testing, and we just decided we’d have to take it as it came, naturally. We now have a fantastic four month old, who I still worry about every day. Is he going to be normal? Is he going to grow up to be an alcoholic like me, his dad? What about Autism? What if he gets…
It’s endless, really. But, on a good day, I can relax and say: he’s beautiful, he’s happy and secure, and whatever is going to come is going to come. The best we can do is make sure he’s as happy and secure as we can make him. Life is beautiful but fraught. I learned this 23 years ago when I lost a young daughter to incurable disease. Took me a long time to even consider being willing to try again. But it’s been totally worth it.
It’s going to be OK
Thank you, and I’m so sorry to hear about your daughter… I can’t even imagine.
The challenge is that between me and DH, our natural instincts differ… I would have been happy to avoid all the tests and roll the dice, but DH felt the more information, the better. He also does not have as much experience and personal relationships with individuals with disabilities, so he’s nervous and running through what-if scenarios, some of which include the possibility of drastic measures. Fortunately, neither of us are dead set in either direction although we have strong feelings, and we can communicate with each other about our fears and concerns, which makes it a little easier.
I’m hoping to keep busy over the next week or so while waiting for the test results to come back. I figure there’s no need to panic until we have stronger data to support a potential problem. Following that intellectual thought, though, is a different story.
I can only tell you a bit of my own experience… as a 35 year old type 1 diabetic and the father of 2 children-- one of whom with autism that unfortunately would be considered “severe” by pretty much any definition… the conversation has come up many times lately if we should have another child… and if so would the right thing to do be to really evaluate our genetic risk factors with “expert guidance” or to just put it all on the line again and roll the dice with faith… I can tell you after much soul searching I have little interest in the experts’ guidance… I can also tell you as the father of a very special little boy that if the opportunity to know what I was getting into in advance, in that regard, was offered to me 6 years ago… knowing what I know now, I’d turn down that advance notice. Raising a special child has broadened my horizons in ways I’d never imagined possible otherwise-- most of all it has taught me that a parent’s love is unconditional
My wife and I operate in much the same way as you and DH. I want all the information and Sheryl is more of toss the dice. One thing I have learned over our 39 years of marriage is that we are both usually right.
We have two sons (neither have diabetes) and 3 grandchildren who are also not touched by diabetes. So i prefer to think the baby will do well. I know that such measurements are never 100% in utero. and i will hope this might be the case in this instance,
What you know is that the baby is ok, let us know when you get more information. is safe n thus status,
Good/reassuring news… the doctor’s office called with the results of one of the blood tests and my risk factor has gone down for both Down’s Syndrome and Trisomy 13 & 18, so my risk is less than what one would expect based on my age alone. This is definitely what I was hoping for but scared to expect. More results expected from the second blood test, which should be in in a few days, plus we should be able to find out the gender at that time. So this was some nice holiday news for us.
Thanks to everyone for the support and well-wishes.
If we ever decide to get pregnant again, I may push to skip the screening next time. I’m not sure the anxiety was entirely worth the adorable ultrasound images of the tiny human exercising its leg muscles and doing somersaults.