Finally getting over the initial shock of being pregnant with twins for a second time. I vowed that this time things would be different. Starting with the birth. Our first twins were born by cesarean section. I found out the cesarean is probably what caused me to develop the rare life threatening condition Placenta Percreta.
Scans until 35 weeks showed both placentas were no issues. I was doing everything to have a Natural birth this time. I attended yoga classes and willed the babies to be in the right direction.
Little did I know that had I gone into labour I may not be here today. Luckily a 34 week scan showed that one placenta had “Moved”. Now classed as low lying (Previa) There was no way I could have a natural birth now as my cervix was covered. I was booked in for another cesarean at 38 weeks.
After a few niggles at an appointment I was kept in hospital. I was told by a couple of the midwives that placentas very rarely move down they usually move up. Meaning that the condition that was like a ticking time bomb inside me, should, have been Spotted earlier.
I was sent for several scans after my niggles, all the time hopeful that they had made a mistake and I could go home. Instead what they found was the placenta not only covering ‘the os’ but it looked like it was growing through my uterus. This I was told is very rare but just to be on the safe side an MRI was done with grim results. Placenta Percreta
A healthy placenta attaches itself to the surface of the uterus in rare cases it can begin to grow into and through the wall. There are 3 stages of severity starting with Accreta. Placenta grows into the uterus. Increta through the uterus. Percreta grows through the uterus, out of the other side and can be invading other organs like the bladder.
I spent one week in hospital not knowing about this condition. The following week I knew too much. I was sent to a hospital over an hour from my home and kids. Booked in for a “cesarean hysterectomy’ under general anesthetic a week later. They couldn’t do it any sooner as a team of 30 plus surgeons & specialists, were needed to be called upon.
For a week I spent my time either terrified of not making it through the operation or asking the various hospital staff questions about the operation and what would happen afterwards.
My surgeon came to see me as soon as I arrived. He explained all of the possible risks involved with the operation. From bladder repair to major blood loss. I likened it to when someone gets told they have cancer. The numbness they feel at that moment. How the words after the word cancer just seem to jumble and you can’t really hear anything.
After the surgeon came, my anaesthetist visited, who fast became my rock during my stay. She had answers for all my questions and she knew just how to make me feel better. She gave me a little to do list each day from the necessary, like scans and things to the tasks like planning the babies outfits for their birth and the day they come home. She also gave me tasks like booking things for me for when I get home. Giving me hope that I would in fact get home.
That week was the worst week I’ve ever endured. I wanted the operation to hurry up yet not wanting it to happen at all.
The day before my operation went surprisingly quick as lots of the team came to see me and introduced themselves. I had bloods taken, my vitals checked babies monitored and so on.
I spent sometime that night outside with a cuppa in one hand and my husbands hand tightly gripped in the other. Looking up at the stars silently praying. Pleading even to make it through.
The operation came. It was 6 hours long. I lost, and was transfused, 11 units of blood. That’s all of my body’s supply plus a bit more. However the operation was successful and as routine as this rare operation can be.
I was able to see my new babies the following day and they were a picture of health.
My month long stay is less than some women with this condition. I feel like I’m one of the lucky ones.
I’m doing ok now, enjoying the chaotic life that is a being a mum if twins twice!