June 28, 2010

Another heart update

Ok, so after my last update yesterday I was driving home when my doctor called. She told me that she called the doctor she wanted me to see about doing a anomaly scan focused on the heart and he told her that unless the problem is still there after 28 weeks,they don't consider it an emergency and they don't even look at it. The hear beats could just regulate themselves. If the issue is still there then they will investigate things further. She actually apologised for making me worry so much but she didn't want to underestimate the issue without having consulted all the experts. So now we wait and see how her heart looks at 28 weeks and take it from there. I hope by then all will look normal and as it should be and if it isn't we'll take it from there. All I can do is keep eating right and keep monitoring her movements which are always frequent, thank God, the rest is not up to us to decide.

I feel so exhausted by all this ups and downs and D told me that he was getting upset with the doctor for making me worry one minute and reassure me the next and then freak me out again. I blame myself in a way for having gone back to the clinic when I am in the care of the hospital where I will deliver. I should have just gone there fore the glucose test and be done with it instead of wanting to see the doctor to make sure everything is ok. I think part of it comes from my fear of something going wrong or because the other hospital treats me like any other pregnant woman and I freak out that I am not. Anyway, now all we can do is not hope all looks great at 28 weeks so we can move on from this.

Thank you again for all your messages and words of encouragement they really meant a lot to me.

Research on irregular heartbeat in unborn babies (puts my mind at ease and it's in line with what I have been told):

An irregular heart rhythm is usually benign, but your obstetrician may refer you to a pediatric cardiologist for a fetal echocardiogram to better define the heart rhythm.

The normal fetal heart rate is between 120 and 160 beats per minute. The heartbeat is usually regular with only a little variation in the heart rate. Each heartbeat comes from the top part of the heart (atrium) beating first, followed immediately by the bottom part of the heart (ventricle). The bottom part of the heart is what causes blood to leave the heart and make a sound on the heart monitor.

The most common cause of an irregular heart rhythm is when the top part of the heart beats too early (premature atrial contraction, or PAC). Sometimes this premature beat is transmitted to the bottom part of the heart; other times the communication between the top and bottom part of the heart is interrupted after a premature beat.

An early beat that is transmitted or blocked will cause an irregularity in the heart's rhythm. These premature atrial contractions are very common in the second half of pregnancy and usually don't cause any problems. They may persist after the baby is born, but usually go away by one month of life. Medication isn't necessary.

These premature beats can cause problems in a small percentage of cases if multiple consecutive premature beats occur. When this happens for a long enough period, it's called tachycardia (fast heart rate). If the heart rate stays above 200 beats per minute for a long period of time (hours or days), it could damage the baby’s heart and other organs. If tachycardia occurs, your pediatric cardiologist and obstetrician will recommend medicine for you to take to help regulate your fetus’s heart rhythm. If there are any signs of damage to the fetal heart, it may be recommended that you be hospitalized while beginning the medicine. If you are put on medicine, it is likely the baby will need to take the same medicine after birth.

Most fetuses with tachycardia have a good prognosis if the heart is structurally normal. Some fetuses have a pattern of frequent blocked premature contractions resulting in a low heart rate (bradycardia). This does not usually cause any problems to the baby as long as the heart rate remains above 60–70. Some fetuses with premature atrial contractions can have bradycardia on one visit and develop tachycardia later on. An irregular heart rhythm is not usually worrisome in the fetus, but should be followed closely by your obstetrician.


  1. I'm so sorry to hear about this potential issue. I'm sure you are quite scared. Praying that everything will be just fine. If there is an issue, better to catch it ahead of time and treat it. Hang in there. (((HUGS)))

  2. Oh Laura, I am sure everything will look good in three weeks time. This can be completely normal but don't beat yourself up for wanting to be checked up at the other hospital, everyone would have done it and it will be ok. Love, Fran

  3. We experienced a worry like this when the babe's heart was measured at 190, yeah active was an understatement. They kept threatening to yank her early but I'm glad they didn't. She's perfectly healthy and mostly happy at this exact moment. Hang in there your daughter is a survivor; she's proven this to us all already.

  4. I will continue to send prayers and good thoughts your way.

    Thank you so much for stopping by my blog, it meant so much to me. I felt weird starting it, and not sure it would be helpful, but it really has been.

    Thank you for the advice about the SA, going to the doctor's office and providing the sample while there has P really freaked out, so I will definitely ask if we can bring it in.

  5. Oh this has to be so scary, but I'm glad you have good doctors who are taking care of you and Izzy. Although I agree with DH a bit - what's up with the rollercoaster?

    Hang in there - deep breaths, right?