Thursday, September 11, 2014

Week 15: Abnormal AFP Results


And so it starts.  

Had to provide my doctors with the oh-so-charming 24 hour urine test this past Monday along with several many blood samples to get the ball rolling on our alpha fetoprotein testing.  Somewhat anticipating abnormal ranges given the high numbers we found with my second pregnancy, I've spent the last several days stressing and nights tossing and turning.  And, for better or worse, my concerns came to a head today. 

Had my 15 week appointment with the newest partner at the Perinatal Associates practice, Dr. Obi (ironic name if you ask me), and I could tell just by the way she walked into the room that my AFP numbers were high.  Not having experience with our case history or our family's generally stoic response to medical complications, I expect that she anticipated a full on melt-down from HB and me to her news that my levels were 2.2 multiples of the median (MoM).  In the non-diabetic world, this number is perfectly fine given that "normal" ranges from 2.0 to 2.5 MoM, but given the higher risk for complications for both me and the baby due to my diabetes "normal" in my case is nothing higher than 1.8 MoM.   

Responding to her with a disappointed, but accepting "we kind of figured as much" she wasn't entirely sure how to respond.  Explaining that we'd been through this rodeo before, Dr. Obi obliged me by avoiding the implication-explanation and the if-this, then-that details and jumped straight to the next course of action.  

"It's standard to run the test again to double check the results and we can do that today.  If the results are high as this first test would indicate, we'll need to do a level-II ultrasound in about three weeks and get you scheduled for a fetal echo."

Having familiarity with both of these exams, we nodded and left with at least the conciliation that we'd have full answers in a few short weeks (not to mention that we'd likely know the gender of baby two weeks earlier than otherwise). 

That said, I'm still waiting to hear back on the results of the second AFP screening but I'm not expecting the results to be different from the last.   We go in for the level-II ultrasound on Sept 24 so, until then, fingers crossed! 

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