Patient Stories

Surprise Special Delivery: High-Risk Pregnancy Brings a Tiny Blessing

Nov. 17, 2021

Tracey and Jeff’s story begins 25 years ago when they welcomed their first child, Jacob. In her 30s, Tracey underwent a uterine fibroid embolization (UFE) to remove painful fibroids (noncancerous tumors) from the wall of her uterus.

Facing Pregnancy Risks After a Uterine Fibroid Embolization

About 30% of women in the U.S. suffer from uterine fibroids. UFE changes ovarian function, which can significantly affect the ability to become pregnant.

Fast forward to 2020. Tracey was taken aback when she had a positive pregnancy test at the age of 46.

“Initially, we were shocked and overwhelmed, because we had settled into the lifestyle of empty-nesters,” said Tracey. “We worried about the pregnancy — whether our baby would be healthy — and if we would have the stamina to keep up with the schedule of being new parents again.”

The couple quickly became excited about their new baby. Her pregnancy was considered high-risk due to the UFE procedure, but aside from more vigorous surveillance by her doctor, Tracey navigated the months with ease.

Tracey and Jeff made sure that their son, Jacob, and his wife, Monica, were the first to know about the pregnancy. “I was actually scared to tell them, but their reaction was great,” said Tracey. “They were living in Colorado at the time. They surprised us by making the decision to move back to Cincinnati.”

Tracey’s plan was to deliver her baby at another local hospital. That plan was diverted the evening of June 2, after Tracey and Jeff finished having dinner with friends. “I felt tightness, and when I went to the bathroom, I realized I was bleeding. Since we were barely at 35 weeks, I was alarmed. We knew the importance of finding ‘the nearest port in the storm,’ so we immediately headed to the closest emergency department, which was at West Chester Hospital,” said Tracey.

Tracey was admitted to the hospital’s maternity unit, where they were checked in by Elizabeth Adu-Gyamfi, RN, who monitored Tracey’s status and calmly told her that her water had broken and that the baby would be coming soon. Elizabeth called Tracey’s physician, and after a brief phone consultation, the doctor concurred that the delivery would need to happen at West Chester Hospital.

“The doctors and staff there confidently reassured me that they saw no reason for me to need a caesarean section, as the baby was not in distress. This was such a relief because having a vaginal delivery was important to me,” said Tracey.

Around 4 a.m., Tracey received an epidural to manage her pain better. Ella Kay Carson was born at 7:34 a.m. on June 3, weighing 4 pounds, 7 ounces.

“My husband was so grateful to be an integral part of the delivery,” said Tracey. “We were in a beautiful, quiet room with lots of space, and all of my nurses made us feel important and special.”

A thorough check by doctors confirmed that Ella was small, but healthy, and she did not require monitoring in the nursery. “She was with me the whole time. I was really lucky to start skin-to-skin immediately and began breastfeeding. She latched right away even though she was itty bitty,” said Tracey. “We were able to go home after just two days at the hospital. I thought it might take longer because of her birth size and being a preemie, but she was eating well and gained weight quickly.”

Tracey continued, “I want other women out there to know it is possible to get pregnant at age 45. It’s possible to have a safe pregnancy after UFE — just because it is not the norm does not mean it’s impossible.”

“And we could not have asked for a warmer welcome for the newest member of our family than what we had at West Chester Hospital. Everything felt personally tailored to us, and we knew that if I had any complications, they could handle it with expertise,” said Tracey. “There were too many special moments to count, and I’m forever grateful. It was a wonderful way to begin our new journey as a family of four.”

Personalized Care Tailored to Parents and Babies

Maternity Services at West Chester Hospital offers many amenities that cater to the individual needs and comfort of new parents and their babies. Special consideration is given to every detail to ensure that birthing experiences are positive, calm and as easy as possible. Skilled and knowledgeable physicians, and competent, caring nurses work together to create a pleasant birthing environment. Parents are treated to a special “date night” celebratory dinner, birthday cakes and other sweet treats during their hospital stay.

High-Risk Maternity Nurses: Making a Difference

Three nurses at West Chester Hospital provided care to Tracey and Ella. They shared their thoughts on the special care they provide to patients and families.

Oksana Syrovatko, RN
“The best part of my job is taking care of moms and babies, being involved in one of the happiest memories a family experiences — the first moments of life. Our team is a family at West Chester Hospital — this is our differentiator, and that allows us to be there for our patients in a personal way

Patrice Mabra, RN
“I truly enjoy my job. I love being with families and their new babies. I get to be there when babies are born, and that is such an honor. I’ve never taken it for granted. The best part of my job is helping a family feel confident to care for their babies.”

Elizabeth Adu-Gyamfi, RN
“As obstetrics nurses, we possess the knowledge and experience that enables us to fully support our patients. It is important to help moms be aware of what is happening during their hospital stay, teaching them about the care we provide and how they are an important part of the care process.”

To receive the name of a UC Health OB-GYN on the West Chester Campus, call 513-298-DOCS (3627).