In March of 2008 my wife and I found out that we were unexpectedly pregnant and a week later we found that we were pregnant with twins. The ultrasound showed that we had identical twins and that they were diamniotic monochorionic. Our OB recommended that we see a maternal fetal specialist in town to monitor for special situations that may occur with twins. We saw him a few weeks later at about 12 weeks. He confirmed them as identical twins. We were scheduled to see him once a month to check for TTTS. Our 16 week ultrasound showed normal, healthy girls.
We were so excited to have more girls to add to the two we had – a 4 year old and a 1 year old. Four weeks later (20 weeks) on a Thursday (June 13, 2008) our world turned upside down. We went back to our doctor for our monthly visit and at the end of the ultrasound he looked at us and said,
My wife and I were both devastated, but I immediately asked, “what do we do about it?”
He said he would refer us to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and that Greer would have to have surgery to try and correct the problem. He called Dr. Michael Bebbington at CHOP to discuss our condition. That afternoon we received a call from CHOP and they told us all our options and our chances of survival. They told us to be there on the following Wednesday (June 19, 2008) to be evaluated and discuss the possibilities of treatment. We spent the weekend making travel arrangements, deciding what to do with our older daughters and researching TTTS and CHOP.
On Monday, June 17, we went back to the doctor to check the babies and to make sure Greer was okay to fly (no contractions, high BP or dilated cervix). Dr. Rosemond was alarmed that the babies’ condition seemed to be worse and wanted to know if we could go right away. He immediately called Dr. Bebbington at CHOP and explained the situation. CHOP felt that it would be okay for us to wait and come on Tuesday.
The TTTS was determined to be between stage 2 and 3. Greer had approximately 13 cm of amniotic fluid around the recipient and almost no fluid in the donor sac. We arrived in Philly on Tuesday night and were scheduled for tests all day Wednesday. After all the tests and scans, we were presented with our options. The laser surgery was the only “choice” for us. We were determined to do whatever possible to save our babies.
We had the surgery on Friday morning and Dr. Bebbington and his team found and “disconnected” 10 blood vessels and drained 2 liters of amniotic fluid. Greer spent a week on bed rest at a hotel in Philly and then we went back to CHOP for follow-up. The results looked good. The donor’s fluid level was up and the heart echoes looked good. We returned home with Greer on strict bed rest. This was pretty difficult with a 4 year old and 1 year old. The recipient’s fluid levels stayed high for about two months but then slowly came down. The donor’s fluid levels stayed normal.
Every visit, the doctor was amazed at how well the babies were doing. After 4 months of almost total bed rest, the babies were born by C-section at 38 weeks 1 day. Kourtney Summerlin arrived first at 6 pounds 4 ounces and Kamryn Dailey arrived next at 7 pounds 6 ounces.
They were normal, healthy babies who never had to see the NICU. Kamryn and Kourtney are now 2 years old with no signs that are any effects from TTTS. They defied all odds and are truly miracles. You can keep up with our krazy life on our blog – www.thewells4kgirls.blogspot.com. Ken, Greer, Karlee, Kendall, Kourtney and Kamryn Wells