30 September 2012

Tetralogy of Fallot and Pregnancy

There seems to be some debate and concern about me getting pregnant again. Much of the debate is simply over not having facts and only knowing that "Kayte has a heart problem."

Now I can understand many concerns. I have not always followed doctors advice and I have not been followed by a cardiologist in several pregnancies. So I do understand the concerns and am learning from my past.

I do want people to know that this pregnancy I will be followed closely by my cardiologist, I emailed him the night I found out I was pregnant to make sure he knew that I was pregnant. He called me about 10 am the next day to talk over my first how I felt about being pregnant and to go over my past pregnancies. He is very much aware that I have had home births and that I was not followed for some time by a cardiologist. I have not hidden any information from him. When I first met him a year ago, we went over all my past pregnancies. He told me at that time, and in not the exact words this time that my heart condition tolerates pregnancy well. That is not to say that there are not things that he is concerned about.

There are 2 main areas in which he said he is most concerned and will be watching. The first is the delivery of the baby. The main concern there is that I don't push too long. He also said that he did not feel that this was going to be a big concern. This is an area I have gotten rather good at LOL. The last 3 or so babies have come out in less then 5 minutes of pushing, and my last guy was out in 3 pushes, it won't be too bad.

The second was the first few weeks after birth. He asked me how my energy was after the babies were born and I had to admit it was worse then when I was at the end of the pregnancy. He said that he hears that a lot from women like me. He also explained that the placenta absorbs much of the extra fluid in my body for the baby and makes it easier on my heart to pump that extra fluid. It is once the baby and more so the placenta is delivered that it can be harder on my heart and there I will have less energy.

I was so thankful to hear that news. I had been struggling for years to understand why so many of the women I knew while they were tired didn't seem nearly as wiped out 10 days after birth as I was.

The current plan for me is to see him at the end of October and see the high risk doctors at the same hospital. I will have 3 echos, one each trimester. He sees no reason right now that I can not have a natural childbirth.

It is also important to know that over the past year I have undergone a lot of testing on my heart, so they have a pretty good idea of where I am at.

If you have any questions feel free to ask and I will be more then happy to answer any questions.

Also this blog is not intended for medical advice, this is simply my experince and I want to share it so that others can be encouraged.

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