APAS Diaries: Baby Darcy – We Have A Good God

It has been five years since I knew that I was battling three out of five categories of repro-immune disorders>>. My hyperactive immune system was the reason why I lost my first two pregnancies. During that time, not a lot of people knew about these autoimmune disorders>>. When women miscarry, it is often attributed to reasons like mahina kapit ng bata or worse, di kasi nag-iingatFrustrating times.

However, as more and more blogs and resources talk about repro-immune disorders>>more and more couples who have experienced losses and unexplained infertility are given hope that one day, they will also hold a baby in their arms.

To say that our journey was a challenging one is an understatement. 

It was full of tears, lamentations, physical discomfort, emotional pains. It was accompanied by a thousand pricks and needles, as I often say. However, as cliche as it may sound, it was all worth it because the husband and I were blessed with not only one, but two wonderful rainbow babies, Santi and Lucia.

Over the course of this journey, I have met wonderful women who shared my heart’s greatest desire – the yearning to have my own little bundle of joy. These women have become my stronghold, even if we haven’t personally met. We prayed for each other, rooted for each other, became each other’s emotional support when things got tough. Many of us, RID warriors, have amazing stories of hope to tell.

I started this APAS Diaries series to inspire couples who are going through a difficult time that everything is possible in spite and despite having repro-immune disorder. The stories of Bella, Sean and Kiel are testaments to that.

Today let me share with you the journey of Darcy’s mommy, my beautiful soul sister Anna.

Name: Anna

RID (repro-immuno disorder) Categories: Cat 1

OB: Dr. Christie Gwen Varona

Immuno: Dr. Liza Stefanie Sulay

Age: 29

How many pregnancies? 3

How many miscarriages? 2

Live births? 1

  1. How did you know that you have RID?

After 2 miscarriages, my OB then referred me to an Immunologist who later advised me to undergo several tests. That’s how I was diagnosed to have Cat 1 problem, or HLA incompatibility.

2. What did you feel when you first found out you had RID?

I actually felt a bit relieved. Honestly, I already had a feeling that something was wrong. So at the back of my head, I just knew. So when my Immunologist interpreted my results, I already understood. Finally, I had the answer to the question on why I couldn’t maintain a pregnancy. Finally, I knew what I was dealing with, what I was up against.

3. What preconception treatments did you have?

I underwent Lymphocyte Immunization Therapy (LIT), four sessions spaced four weeks apart. Then when I was advised to try to conceive, I started administering anticoagulants (Tinzaparin and Aspirin), steroids and vitamins to make sure my body was ready for pregnancy.

4. What is the greatest challenge of having RID?

It is tiresome to undergo the treatments. I had to fly to and from Manila as the technology for the diagnostics tests and LIT are not available in Cebu, even though my Immunologist is skilled to do them. For the year 2016, I probably flew seven times just for the tests and LIT, spending only a few hours in Manila. Physically tiresome also because the medications had side effects. But the thing about undergoing treatment for RID is that it is not 100% foolproof, so we went ahead and took the risk anyway. The treatment is not a joke, my savings were close to zero but it didn’t matter anymore.

5. How long after the treatments did you get pregnant?

After my 4th LIT session, my Lymphocyte Antibody Test (LAT) scores went up so my Immunologist told me that we can try to conceive. At my next cycle, I got pregnant. I was beyond that even with PCOS, I was able to conceive. All glory to God!

6. What were your medications during pregnancy?

Tinzaparin (Innohep), once a day

Aspirin, once a day

Prednisone, once a day

Folic acid, once a day

Vitamin B-complex, once a day

Calcium, twice a day

Vitamin C, twice a day

DHA, twice a day

Metformin, three times a day

Prenatal Vitamins with protein, four times a day

Progesterone (duphaston), three times a day

Progesterone (Heragest) suppository, three to four times a day

7. Any advice to those who are diagnosed with RID and are still trying

First, choose the best doctors you are comfortable with. An OB-Perinatologist-Immunologist tandem with plenty of success stories of caring for women with RID is your best bet. I’ve been to several OBs but only a Perinatologist was able to handle my pregnancy well and seemed to REALLY know what RID is.

8. Please share your RID timeline:

June 2015 – 1st miscarriage at 5 weeks or less (chemical pregnancy)

November 2015 – 2nd miscarriage at 6-7 weeks, early fetal demise, referred to Immunologist for workup. Advised to rest for a few months first before workup.

April 2015 – diagnosed Cat 1, advised to undergo LIT with Dr Lara Aleta in Manila. Treated also as APAS + due to my past miscarriages.

May – August 2016 – Flew to Manila every 4 weeks for 4 LIT sessions

Sep 2016 – go signal to TTC given by Immunologist

Oct 2016 – positive PT and hCG test ☺ After a few days went to ER for threatened miscarriage. Advised bed rest. Switched to OB-Perinatologist. No heartbeat/fetal pole seen yet on TVS at 6-7 weeks. Immunologist highly suggested LIT booster or IVIG. We had to make a decision as both treatments are not available in Cebu and it was holiday (Undas) at that time. We opted for the LIT booster and flew to Manila ASAP. After a few days I was bleeding again, this time I thought I was losing the pregnancy. OB immediately ordered ultrasound, and at 7w5d we saw the heartbeat! 💓 Bed rest ensued until the 4th month.

March 2017 – Borderline GDM, controlled through diet and Metformin. Notching at Doppler ultrasound seen until before I gave birth. Innohep dosage increased to 0.45 then to 0.50 ml due to persistent notching.

May 22 2017 – 35w5d at 3AM, my bag of water ruptured so we went straight to the hospital. I was already 4cm dilated then felt labor pains at 5AM. Gave birth at 12:05 PM to a beautiful baby girl. ☺ She was premature but thank God for she is a strong baby!

9. What is your greatest realization?

I realized that we have a good God. He has His reasons why He took back my two angels, who I know are now my family’s guardian angels. I got pregnant in the right time. Money doesn’t matter anymore. We were financially drained (and still making up for it), but having a baby we can finally call our own is just priceless.

10. What/Who helped you through this difficult time?

My husband is my biggest supporter. My family and closest friends were also there to support me financially and emotionally.

11. Anything else you would want to share

Don’t lose hope–I almost did. Surround yourself with positivity. Try  your best, and God will do the rest. Everything will happen in its own perfect time. God is indeed good. 🌈

APAS Diaries Baby Darcy 1

 

One Response to “APAS Diaries: Baby Darcy – We Have A Good God

  • Llewelyn Porta
    2 months ago

    Darcy will be one or maybe your biggest blessing. She is God’s gift to you. Continue to be an inspiration to all women to long to hold their babies. 😙

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