Nasty Steroid injections at 35.5 weeks pregnant
identical twins share a placenta and research shows that the placenta starts to deteriorate at 37 weeks. Hence we are booked in for an elective C section at 37 weeks exactly. This is actually considered full term for twins so its nothing to worry about but the last thing to mature in a baby is their lungs so as a precaution in the UK most consultants will want to ensure you have had 2 steroid injections normally given 24 hours apart to help mature their lungs. As over 50 percent of twins arrive around the 35/36 week mark they like to give these injections a little earlier hence my hospital visit yesterday and today.
The injection has to be given intramuscularly, so I chose to have it in my bottom as there is ample padding and the injection itself isn't too painful. It does have a nasty sting afterwards which lasts a few minutes so be warned but it soon wears off.
The main issue is the actual side affects. Its common knowledge that steroids can affect your sleep and this was especially true for me. I would advise if you have to have steroids to book them first thing in the morning as early as you can. Secondly they appear to raise your body temperature. For me it just happened to coincide with the hottest day of the year with temperatures during the day of 32degrees, and at night it was still 26 degrees in our bedroom with no aircon. Despite a cold shower before bed my whole body felt like it was on fire. I really struggled. The best solution I came up with in the end was to wrap cold wet flannels around my feet which were resting on a towel so the bed didn't get wet. This eventually helped bring my core temperature down. It didn't help me sleep but at least I was comfortable!
The Day Assessment Unit in the hospital who gave me the steroids were so helpful and because I felt like the twins movement had slowed down last night and this morning - they hooked me up to the monitor to review their heartbeats and typically they both woke up and were super active. Very reassuring to hear!
So unless they decide to make an early appearance our next trip to hospital is 28th July for our pre-op and Dday is 29th! eeek! Not long now!