Dr. Perry is writing to the supporters that provided for the Waiting Mothers House about a patient that I mentioned in my recent blog post. He has given me permission to share his letter here as well.
Rebecca is a 25 year old who had one birth by C-section, then lost 7 babies to preterm rupture of membranes and delivery. In this, her ninth pregnancy, she had a “cerclage” placed, in which a suture is placed to hold her cervix closed. For almost 3 months, it kept her baby inside. On January 7, 2016, she was 27 ½ weeks along and her water broke.
At His House of Hope, preterm babies have a chance at survival if they can reach 29 weeks gestation. Rebecca was started on antibiotics and steroids to prevent infection and help baby’s lungs mature. As she had no bleeding or pain, we admitted her to the Waiting Mothers Shelter, and monitored her daily for several weeks.
When she was almost 30 weeks, she began showing signs of infection, so we removed her cerclage and restarted antibiotics. The following day, the baby’s umbilical cord fell out of the patient (a “cord prolapse”)—which is usually fatal to the baby immediately. The baby still had a heartbeat, so we rushed to C-section, and delivered a small, but breathing, 2 pound 14 ounce (1310 grams) baby girl.
As I write this, the baby girl is 5 days old and struggling with issues of prematurity—breathing, tolerating feeds, and infection that threaten her tiny body. The parents are attentive and concerned, but have yet to name her, as they hold loosely to hope, having lost so many babies before. The Waiting Mothers Shelter allowed Rebecca to remain near the hospital so we could intervene quickly when problems arose—giving this baby a chance at life.