8.29.2013

Three Percent

Here's a little trivia for you to close out your week. Did you know that only three percent of babies can't manage to get themselves head down by the time they are full term? After all, head down is the most comfortable position for them (and mama). Gravity gets to do its work on their heads, the largest part of the baby. And 97 percent of them figure this out. Violet had it figured out - she was head down from the get go and never budged.

Ah, but this second child of mine... Apparently in a quest for some attention, she has decided to sit herself upright. Breech, they call it. Terribly inconvenient and uncomfortable, I call it.

We went in on Wednesday for an ultrasound. My doctor ordered it because at my last appointment, I went from measuring perfectly to measuring two to three weeks ahead of schedule. There were concerns that I was growing a 10-pounder. So bonus pictures were ordered.

Well, lo and behold, the ultrasound showed a big girl, to be sure (already seven pounds!) but nothing on the mammoth scale. The doctor is predicting in the eight pound range, totally doable. But the bigger news was the revelation that the baby is head up, the little stinker.

When the doctor found out I wasn't overly keen to volunteer for a c-section, she suggested we try to flip the baby. It's called an external cephalic version (ECV). It basically involves the world's most unrelaxing stomach massage as the doctor literally tries to push, flip and turn the baby 180 degrees. If you're grimacing right now, you're giving me the same reaction most people have when they hear the news.

The procedure is about 60 percent effective. But it does involve a trip to the hospital just in case the pushing and prodding sends the baby into distress and earns me a one-way ticket to an emergency c-section. And of course, it might not work, leaving me with a breech baby and, of course, a c-section anyway. Or we could be successful, and girlfriend might manage to flip back before delivery.

Then again, it could totally work.

Last night I started googling and found all sorts of helpful home remedies, from crazy positions to get in (lay head down on a tilted ironing board) to ancient Chinese wisdom (massage the outside of your pinky toe while burning some special herbs). One involved putting an ice pack near the baby's head (they naturally avoid cold) or shining a flashlight where you want to the head to end up (follow the light!) I did try some hip rolls and a bag of frozen broccoli on my stomach, until Violet pitched a fit that she couldn't eat the broccoli. And I found some youtube videos that made the entire procedure seem pretty breezy - at least, no one was screaming in pain, so...

Anyway, next Friday, week 37 day 1, will find us in the hospital, awaiting our ECV. My doctor said the goal was to send me home still pregnant, be it head up or head down. I figure it's a pretty reasonable goal. At least I'll know we tried our best. Such a drama queen, this one.

5 comments:

  1. FYI it is totally possible to deliver a breech baby. I think most doctors won't do though. I haven't had to deal with that, thank goodness, but you could talk to your doctor about the possibility if the ECV doesn't work. Good luck!

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  2. I can't believe you're already almost 37 weeks! Hope this little one flips for you before the big day :) We've been thinking about you guys! Big hugs :)

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  3. 3% huh? Well, BOTH of mine were in this category! Yep, two breech babies. The funny thing was, after they were born, they didn't like to be held in a cradle position (you know, with their head in the crook of your arm and them laying across your body.) Nope, mine liked to be head up! They head laying on my shoulder...just like in utero! lol

    I tried to turn Tyler. Went in and they said my fluid was too low to turn him safely so we went ahead with the c-section. Next time, I had the option and I chose another c-section, more for convenience. I figured if I knew the exact date and time, I could make arrangements for child #1. turns our she was breech so it really was a non-issue anyway!

    Good luck with whatever happens. She will be precious!

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  4. Miles was transverse (sidways) at 36 weeks so I went to the chiropractor who said that my hips were not aligned and he didn't have room for his head down there. After 2 adjustments he moved. Natalie was transverse at 34 weeks so I bought the Moxa sticks just in case, but she also moved after a few adjustments. I am happy to send you the Moxa sticks I have if you want to email me your address! I've read some crazy stories about how they work! My midwife said to lay down and burn them near your pinky toes every night. Basically they encourage fetal movement. I've heard about EVC. It can't be too bad, but I'm sure it's not pleasant, so maybe this can help prevent it??
    Sorry she is being stubborn. When Natalie was transverse I was SO uncomfortable! Head up hurts!!! I hope she moves for you.
    You can also order the Moxa sticks from Amazon for super cheap, but I really don't mind sending mine since I don't know why I'd use them now. They are smokeless. Maybe use the sticks and a few adjustments before the EVC??? Good Luck!!

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  5. Good luck! It's worth a try!

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