On Thursday night I had a bleeding scare. Brown blood mixed with mucus. Friday morning we called the doctor and gave them some information. No, no fever, no intercourse, no chills, yes lower back pain, no abdominal cramps… They said bedrest (which I know doesn’t work first trimester, but we don’t live in a city) and go to the emergency room if the blood turns red or cramps start. We asked… should we get a baseline beta (blood test)? They said sure, why not.
To make a long story short, the bleeding stopped on Sunday and we spent the next few days playing phone tag and finally gave up and changed doctors. My previous doctor is good, and actually delivered DC as the backup for the amazing OB/GYN who moved to Australia… but it is impossible to get an appointment in her office less than a month in advance, and it is difficult to get in touch with her nurse. The new doctor recently moved to the area and was able to fit us in in a day’s notice.
So, while waiting to hear back from the nurse about the second beta (if they go down => miscarriage… if they go up… that may be ok or may just be the placenta making hormones), we went to the new doctor and did an ultrasound. This one was abdominal rather than transvaginal, but the baby and heartbeat showed up just the same. I cried. She was also able to give us our beta results since she’s in the same hospital system as our other doctor. Heartbeat is healthy. Growth exactly on track. Everything is fine. Six days of tension and fear melted away.
Now, the new doctor said some things that aren’t factually correct. I mentioned my PCOS. She said, very confidently, there’s no difference in miscarriage rates between PCOS women and normal women. Maybe I should have contradicted her, but I didn’t say anything given it was our first meeting. But, if there’s no difference then why the heck am I on 1500mg metformin? I’m pretty darn sure the only reason I put up with it is because 1500mg metformin has been shown to lower the chance of miscarriage for women with PCOS to that of normal women in the first trimester. My previous doctor said new research has come out in the past 5 years suggesting I should stay on it for the duration of the pregnancy because even though it doesn’t change chance of miscarriage or stillbirth past first trimester it has been shown to improve other outcomes.
But I can see the new doctor if I have sudden bleeding, and I have to wait up to 4 weeks to see the previous doctor.
The problem is if I have other issues that are beyond her area of expertise. These days it really seems like you have to become an expert on whatever problems you have. We do so much asking and suggesting to the doctors based on empirical research and what other women’s doctors in larger cities who really are experts suggest to their patients. I wish I could have an OB/GYN who is as awesome as DC’s pediatrician. When we went in to the pedi with a problem we hadn’t the slightest clue about, he was able to look at DC, ask a couple questions, do a couple of tests, diagnose the problem (“Nursemaid’s elbow”), fix it, then explain how to avoid it or fix it ourselves. If something like that happens to me… I’m just up excrement creek. As long as things I can Google happen I’m fine, but once I’m out of my league, I really wish I were living in a city.
But the baby is alive. And for now that’s what is important. Hopefully there won’t be any more bleeding scares.
And now I can get back to work… there’s a lot of stuff I didn’t do in the past week that really needs to get done. But it’s much easier to do without that overwhelming worry.