6 answers

Vasa Previa Diagnosed but My Doctor Is Not Planning Any Course of Management

I am currently 23 weeks and 5 days pregnant, and was just diagnosed on Tuesday with Vasa Previa. I have had 2 prior C-sections, both emergency, after induced labor failure and fetal distress, so this birth has been pre-planned as a C-section from the beginning. The doctor who made the diagnosis is a maternal and fetal medicine specialist that I was referred to by my regular OB/GYN as a follow up. The original diagnosis was placenta previa made at 12 weeks by another specialist, who was conducting a genetic screening test.
My concern is that from what I have read on the condition, it is very serious, yet the specialist said I should not have to limit ANY activities, and my OB/GYN says they still plan on waiting until 39 and a half weeks before scheduling the C-section. Should I be concerned?
I am sure of the diagnosis, and was even shown on doppler ultra sound, the two maternal and one fetal blood vessel that travel across the cervical opening since the placenta dissolved away from that area. I was also told that there is a risk of cord compression as the baby is already head down and will only get larger.

I am making an appointment with another doctor tomorrow, but am wondering if I am just being overly cautious.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I ended up calling a different doctor ( who was recommended by a member of a support group for Vasa Previa) for an appointment a few days ago, as the second doctor I was trying to see was out of town and would not have been able to see me until I was already almost 27 weeks along (I am currently 25 and 5 days). I explained to the nurse what I had been diagnosed with, and she read over a faxed copy of my records from my previous doctor, she said that the doctor would need to be informed ASAP. 20 minutes later she called me back with a same day appointment with the doctor, as well as the Peri that works with them. The diagnoses was reconfirmed that afternoon, and the Peri said that she would absolutely NOT recommend waiting until 39 weeks to deliver. She went on to say that placenta increta was also present, but missed during the last scan. I will be hospitalized at 28 weeks, and deliver at 35-36 weeks. I hate to think of the outcome if I had blindly trusted the original doctor's planned course of action. Early diagnosis is the key, but only if you USE the information, in my case, it was being ignored, and could have had a tragic outcome.

Thanks to everyone for thier feedback!

More Answers

You can absolutely never be overly cautious when it comes to your health or that of your baby.

1 mom found this helpful

My best friend had the condition with her twins. They put her on bedrest at 28 weeks because if she were to go into labor then it could be dangerous for both her and her baby. So in my opinion it is not something that should be taken lightly. Voice your concerns to your doctors and make sure you find someone you trust that you feel is looking out for your best interest. I really feel strongly that you should have full faith in your doctor and if you don't your experience will not be a positive one. Just be careful what you read on the Internet. Those stories are usually always the worst case scenerios.

always trust your gut instinct. good luck and may God bless you with a health baby.

After looking it up, since I had never heard of Vasa Previa before, it looks like your doctors are following the course of action. It says the biggest thing to do to help is to have a prenatal diagnosis and schedule a c-section. Your Dr may end up moving up your scheduled section, but you don't want it done too early.
Of course, talk to your dr about any concerns you have and do what you feel is right!

Hi C.,
I also had vasa previa that was diagnosed at 30 weeks. I delivered a beautiful son at an planned early c-section of 37 weeks which is actually considered late for a known vasa previa. i would definitely be concerned with a 39.5 wk delivery.
The worst danger is an unknown vasa previa because it is usually tragic. So you are clear of that. The next danger is an contracting or onset of labor that will threaten shearing of the cord causing bleeding to the baby & you.
Since I never had any incidence of contracting or bleeding, my doctor consulted with a maternal-fetal medicine doc and choose 37 weeks for delivery. That would have change if I had any contracting or spotting. I was immediately put on pelvic rest and told that if there was any instance that I had to present to L & D to firmly instruct the nurses not to do any type of internal exam.
I am also a nurse and have many friends that work in L & D and they state there are many ultra-conservative docs that will hospitalize the patients at 25 weeks. I thought this was a bit extreme (and so did the nurses, since none of the patients had bleeding or contracting).
I guess what I am saying is I think your doc is too relaxed and I would NOT feel comfortable with his/her course of treatment, but I don't necessarily agree with ultra-conservative docs out there either. The great thing is that they caught it! That is the life saver right there. If you want any other info feel free to message me.

I don't think you're being overly cautious. I would stay off your feet a lot more than you normally would so that the cord has less of a chance to compress.

Thinking of you,
D.

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