OkaZHI: Okanagan-Zambia Health Initiative

A good day for twins to be born!

  We had quite the experience on the maternity ward yesterday.  We had a first-time mother of twins on the antenatal ward who was admitted because she had been draining amniotic fluid for days.  We took her for an ultrasound to discover that she only had a small pocket of fluid remaining in the amniotic sac.  We recognized this as a major concern and alerted the doctor and nurses immediately.  To make matters worse, the ultrasound technician estimated the babies to be only 31.5 weeks gestation and around 1.5 kg each.  This worried us even more, as extrauterine life sustaining resources for premature babies are lacking here in Mongu.  We advocated for the patient and suggested that the babies be delivered as soon as possible.  The doctor agreed with us and we alerted the theater team to prepare for a c-section.  The young mother was very frightened, as surgeries have a high mortality rate here.  She was reluctant to go ahead with the procedure, but was finally convinced that it was the best option for both herself and her babies.  Recognizing that she was afraid, Megan asked if she believed in God and she nodded in agreement, asking if she would pray for her.  Megan held her had and said a prayer with her.  It was a very emotional moment for both of them.  

  We went into the operating room with our resuscitation equipment anticipating the worst outcome and prepared to intervene if necessary.  The babies were delivered quickly.  Nicole received the second twin, which was a very exciting moment for her.  Both babies were flat initially, but with some stimulation, suction, and a few puffs from the ambu bag we were able to get them breathing.  It was a very rewarding experience.  It was the first time we felt like we really made an impact.  
 We would like to thank UBCO and Ron Caldwell for donating the ambu bags that we used to save these precious lives.

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