- Baby Saves
“I had an uncomplicated pregnancy and passed all of my prenatal tests. Baby Callum moved very early and quite often. In fact, he moved so much that it took several sessions to complete his anatomy scan!
When I was around 21 weeks, my husband and I took a flight to Virginia. While traveling, I came upon the Count the Kicks page while scrolling through Instagram. I had never heard of Count the Kicks or understood the significance of movement monitoring. I realized while reading that Callum was not moving as much as usual, but I felt like I was overreacting, and I subconsciously took this as a sign that I needed to really pay attention to my son’s movements.
The following week I had an appointment and spoke with my provider about the change in Callum’s movements (I was 23 weeks at this point). I STILL felt like his kicks were off, even though his heart rate was within normal range.
I continued to monitor his movements, and when I reached 26 weeks there was a nagging feeling that I could not take anymore, I had to gain peace of mind. I called the hospital for a wellness check, and I was advised to drink a Coke and see if that encouraged movement.* It didn’t work. Once at the hospital, they checked and my baby’s heart rate was within normal range and his sonogram looked great. But I knew that something wasn’t right; I had a feeling I can’t explain and was experiencing a tightness in my chest.
They continued to monitor me and my baby for another hour. They had me drink juice, Sprite, and put ice on my stomach in order to encourage my baby’s movement.* Even though all vitals were within normal range, they said he did not look happy. He was not moving like he should. They were perplexed and asked what made me decide to get checked, and I told them it was because of a change in his movements.
They continued to monitor me, and I decided to call for a nurse when my chest was tight. Sure enough, Callum’s heart rate dropped every time I felt that tightness in my chest.
At 10 p.m. my doctor came in and told me that my baby’s best chance at life was to have an emergency C-section, because they didn’t know what was wrong, but they knew something wasn’t right.
Callum was born at 26 weeks weighing 1 pound 12 ounces. He had an 80-day NICU stay. There was a blood clot behind his placenta that was causing him distress, and they determined this was the root of his movement change.
If I hadn’t seen the Count the Kicks page, Callum wouldn’t be here today.” – Kelsey D., Callum’s mom
Editor’s note: Research shows that fetal movement is best monitored without interventions like juice, candy, or drinking ice water.
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