Thursday, February 18, 2010

In the high range of normal

When you've been through what any of us has--pregnancy, miscarriage, infertility, treatments, etc.--you want to go into every doctor's appointment and hear only one thing: "everything looks perfect!" Anything short of that--even if it's merely a less-than-effusive, "sure, everything's fine" will send most of us into a panic.

So, you can understand how I felt when the ultrasound tech was nearly silent for 40 minutes of today's nuchal screen and as she kept trying to jolt the baby into a different position by jostling my belly over and over again.

This was NOT the reassuring 12-week ultrasound I was hoping for.

The problem, apparently, was that the baby was lying in such a way that made it difficult to accurately measure it's nuchal translucency. She took a bunch of different measurments, each time getting something in the range of 2.8-3.1mm. (Apparently anything above 3.0mm is considered abnormal.)

Thankfully, she finally gave up and brought in another tech, who was able to take the measurements in about two and half minutes. He took three measurements in a row that put the thickness at 2.6mm. Better, but not altogether reassuring.

The good news is that everything else looks fine: the heartbeat was a strong 153bpm, you could see a four-chamber heart, a stomach, the bladder, the lungs, arms, legs, etc. And, you could see a clearly defined nasal bone, which is apparently a reassuring sign.

The second tech tried his hardest to be reassuring, but the damage from the first tech was done, and now I'm freaked. And, Dr. Google is even more useless than ever when researching this topic. I can find some info that suggests that any reading over 2.5mm at this point is high, some that say anything over 3.0mm is. Either way, this isn't the super-thin result that I think everyone wants to see.

I now have to wait at least a week until we get the results of my bloodwork back to assess the actual chances of this baby having a genetic abnormality.

Of course, I hope that everything comes back just fine and we can put this behind us. But, I actually suspect that the results will be inconclusive. Apparently the point of this screening is to get your risk down to something less than 1:1,000. The risk for my age (35 at delivery) is something like 1:350. I'm willing to bet I get something right around that number, which will tell me only that I should have skipped the damn test entirely. (Of course, there is also a chance that my risk will go up and that I'll see a number higher than that. Let's just hope that isn't the case.)

I'm still trying to process all of this--and to talk myself down. I just have to hope everything is fine. I'm sure I'll post something more coherent eventually. For now, just keep your fingers crossed that this little bean is just fine.


Life in Eden said...

Oh hon, I'm sorry you are stuck in limbo. That just sucks. But it sounds like otherwise things look good, and all SCREENING test have flaws. That's why screening tests are sucky!

I'm hoping the blood give you a good result. Would you consider amino? Sorry if you aren't ready to talk about that -- I just know you are a planner so ...

I'm thinking of you and hope the twins keep you busy enough that the week flys by. Hugs.

Erin said...

Oh man - I'm so sorry. I'm sure everything will turn out perfectly, but this week is the worst for you, I'm sure. Here's hoping it will pass very quickly and that the kiddos help distract you! xoxo

Bumble said...

Hey there!! I can truly honestly say that I do know how you feel on this one... Not sure if you remember but Emma's NT measured exactly that, between 2.8 - 3.1mm, I was petrified, scared, sad, bawling my eyes out so worried that something was wrong. When I had the blood test it brought my odds down from 1:350 to 1:950. 3mm is only very BORDERLINE "abnormal", its when you get to 4mm, 5mm and 6mm that they really start to worry. Anyway, Emma turned out PERFECTLY and I'm more than sure that your little one will too. (Although I know its natural that you'll worry as I did, but I hope my story gives you some hope that all is most likely perfect) Thinking of you as you wait for that confirmation though xxx

Ms. Planner said...

I know we've discussed this at length off the blogosphere but I just wanted to let you know again that I am thinking of you and that I hope you find the "plan" that works best for you on how to proceed.

Your perinatologist sounds like a rock star though!