What Happens If The Babies Die After 20 Weeks

13 Replies
kate87 - February 3

I know that sounds like a horrible question header but i couldnt think how else to put it. I am pregant with twins. I am 21 weeks. The babies seem to be struggling (they arent growing and their development seems hindered, heartrate isnt so good etc etc) and my doctors are monitoring it closely. There is a chance they might not make it. My doctors dont want to discuss what will happen if things do go down that road because they think its best to "cross that bridge when we come to it". But im so scared because from everything ive read, d&cs dont get done after 20 weeks and i just dont know that i can have them induce labour so i can give birth to my two "sleeping" babies. I dont think i could handle going through all that and not being able to take them home with me. Does anyone know what they will do if (god forbid) my babies little hearts just dont want to beat anymore? Im really scared and would appreciate any advice any one has to give me. Thanks.


sososleepy - February 4

Kate87, I am so very sorry! I went in to the doc secretly hoping for twins myself, mostly because I didn't feel right and was reaching for answers that weren't awful. I only made it 9 weeks before mc and dnc so I haven't experienced what you're afraid of, but can tell you that one option if the babies fail in the 2nd trimester is dilation and evacuation, d & e instead of d & c. You'll get tons of answers if you search dilation and evacuation in quotes. It's very similar to d & c, but if the babies are too large sometimes they have to make them smaller in order to remove them without additional damage to you, which sounds horrible I know, and if it helps I tried really hard to think of my dnc as fixing me to prepare ttc instead of relating it to a failed pg. It doesn't work sometimes, but it helps. I need to warn you that for those of us that mc the technical term for mc is abortion so when we reasearch either d & C or d & e a lot of the detailed answers and things I was looking for like how soon after can I, and what are the chances of infection or complication after, are on abortion sites. I read it, but I cried a lot more and was at first really really angry that they call it the same thing. Still am I guess, only just with one really now... It's amazing that you can feel worse when you all ready feel that bad - caught me by surpirse so I needed to warn you or others looking that up if they haven't all ready found that out. As for advice, lie down on your left side a bit more often, take it easy, and do something you enjoy (I like to read a good book) so you don't worry as much. I think it wouldn't have mattered for me if I'd glued myself to the bed and never gotten up... it all ready wasn't working right and I couldn't change that. Hopefully you can, and it will all be all right for you! Keep us posted. Big Hugs and best wishes!


squished - February 4

Kate....I'm so sorry to hear of your twins' problem. I hope that everything turns out well for you and your twins. If it should happen that they don't make it you will have to go through delivery. We lost our ds at 21w in utero and I had to deliver him. They'll admit you to the hospital and start medicine to begin labor. And yes the cramps and contractions will be just like a normal labor. I had to have pain medication and quite a bit of it. You don't have to push or anything b/c the baby is so small. It was the most horrible experience of my entire life and having to go through that and not bring home a baby was heartbreaking. They did clean him up and dress him and we did get to hold him for as long as we wanted to and say good bye. As I said before I hope that you don't have to go through this, but if you do be sure to take the time to hold you babies and tell them hello. It's the time that I cherish the most.


sososleepy - February 4

kate87, I'm so glad squished answered. I think you have options, choices about which way to proceed might be best for you. Ask your doctor and hope you never need to really know. Hugs and hugs and hugs. Keep us posted.


kate87 - February 6

So does that mean i will get a choice between a d&e and delivering them? I dont think i could handle the delivery emotionally!!! Squished are you Australian? If so another thing im wondering is, if I do deliver them will they at least get a birth certificate. Some one told me they dont but you can get a certificate of death? This is such a horrible thing to have hanging over my head and no one in my family will help me get answers cos they dont want me "focusing on a negative outcome" but i just have so many questions. Thank you so much for giving me some answers! I appreciate it more than i can say really! Hopefully my little angels will get stronger and bigger and they will be fine!


Danielle19 - February 10

Kate sorry to hear about your situation, i was watching a show about twins the other day and there is a condition call twin to twin transfusion? i think thats what it was called but it where the twins share blood vessels and they don't develope properly, but there is a procedure that can be done to cure, you could ask your doctor if that might be something that is hindering there growth, hope everything works out well for you and your family


squished - February 10

Kate....I'm not to sure about what a D&E is, so I'm not too sure if that's an option for you or not (if you need it that is). The delivery was rough until they gave me the pain medicine. And no, you don't get birth certificates and here in the U.S. you don't get a death certificate either. I'm not sure about in Australia though. I wish you luck and hope that you are just worrying for nothing!


kate87 - February 11

It isnt twin to twin transfusion - thats only possible with identical twins sharing a placenta. Mine are boy and girl - so fraternal and as such dont share a placenta. They think its stress that might be hindering their growth. It could be a thousand things but fingers crossed all ends up ok! Squished - thats ridiculous that you dont get a birth certificate! The law is so messed up sometimes, especially when it comes to ackowledging unborn children as "living" i mean seriously ask any pregnant woman and she will tell you it is VERY MUCH alive!!! Makes me soooo angry! Thanks for all your help though. Im sure it must be tough to talk about and what not and i really appreciate it!


lunneecourtney - February 11

I'm sorry to hear that Kate, I was 7 weeks pregnant and my baby never develop the heart beat. I know my pregnancy was a lot less than your but I can feel your pain. The last three week of my pregnancy my doctor moniter my hormone level and my kept dropping, and my doctor come to conclusion for me to have D&C. I been struggle to accept my lost since. I have been crying every night missing my baby that i never have. But all i think of it was not meant to be. I hope you get through this tough time and be strong.


shayjas - February 21

Kate, it's not a horrible question. I just lost my daughter at 21 weeks. Like you I did not want to go through a delivery. At this point in the pregnancy the bones are formed and a D&C will not be done because there is a risk of tearing your uterus. I had a D&C after I delivered because the placenta was retained. Even though it is the hardest emotionally a delivery is the safest way. And you will be able to see your babies and hold them if you wish. But you must focus on the fact that you can still have a happy healthy delivery. I wish you all the best.


Sarah_doodlez - March 22

I lost my son at 25 weeks, and I gave a natural birth. I didn't want to do it at first, but I really didn't have that choice. I was induced and 15 hours later I gave birth to my son. It was beautiful. I was giving every type of pain killer because it couldn't "hurt" him. I suggest you go through the delivery, if it comes to that. It's really the most beautiful experience ever, but then again, some people are different. I have my fingers crossed and and prayer in my heart that everything works out for you.


mosley12 - March 23

how did things end up?


preggoplease - April 10



Tory1980 - April 10

Hi Kate, I am hoping that you never have to find out what happens should you lose your babies. I know that until the baby reaches 24 weeks you will not be issued a birth certificate (in Ireland)but you should get a death certificate. However, all being well you won't need one! I think you need to discuss with your Doctors the worst case scenario. This way you will be able to deal with things and prepare yourself should the worst happen. There will be no surprises and should your babies wish to leave you early at least you know that you have helped them in every way you could by staying completely informed. The choice as to what happens should the babies hearts stop is a personal choice for you. You may be told to wait and see if your body will naturally put itself into labour or you may be induced or they could do an operation. You need to know all your options to make the choice right for you while you can think (almost) straight. Waiting won't help should the worse happen and at least you know this way you can't be pressured into something you might not be ready for if you are in the midst of grief. I hope you deliver your babies safe and well and in 19 weeks time!



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