Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Heading into the home stretch!

Finally in the last month with Tex!! We're almost as ready as we can be to welcome him. Just need to finalize that middle name .....

I've been seeing the doctor now once a week. At 37 weeks, we had our final ultrasound to check on Tex's position, the health of the placenta, amount of amniotic fluid, make a weight estimate and otherwise take a final look. Good news is that he is headed south and everything critical checked out fine. He got an 8/8 on his biometric profile :-) We also got to count some little toes and fingers, see his well-rounded cheeks and verify he is indeed a he. Tex weighed in around 6 lbs already with another 1/2 lb - 1 lb expected before birth. Peanut was 7.9 lbs herself so it sounds reasonable.

In addition the ultrasound check, in the US at this point most pregnant women are screened for group B streptococcus (GBS) bacteria. This is something that never came up in Finland and so I was not tested with Peanut.
Between 10 and 30 percent of pregnant women carry GBS bacteria in the vagina or rectal area, where they may pass it to their babies during labor or birth. With proper prenatal testing and treatment during labor, though, the risk is small.

Without treatment, one or two out of every 200 babies born to "GBS positive" mothers would become infected with the bacteria and develop what's called early-onset GBS disease ... which can cause sepsis (an infection in the blood), pneumonia, and meningitis in newborns....

getting screened when you're between 35 and 37 weeks of pregnancy and receiving antibiotic treatment during labor if you test positive will greatly reduce your baby's risk of becoming infected
During the last month at each visit, my doctor also does a pelvic exam to see if the cervix has begun dilating and/or effacing in preparation for labor. I'm not sure about the value of these exams since a woman can walk around 2 cm dilated for weeks and not go into labor while someone who had no progress can suddenly go into full labor.

If Tex follows his big sister's example, we won't be seeing him for another several weeks :-)

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