Pregnant Athlete Journal, Week 9: To CVS or Not to CVS

It’s week nine of my pregnancy and I’ve turned into a uncoordinated, injury-prone mess. Not to mention I’m seriously stressed out about whether or not to get a CVS done.

My heart rate is increasing during my workouts and I have to be careful not to get overheated. I’m more injury prone – my wrist hurt after vacuuming. (What is THAT?) I drop things and trip more. I can’t take any drugs for pain or allergies but at least I’m not dealing with morning sickness.

My big concern now is if I should do chorionic villus sampling (CVS) to check for any abnormalities since I’m over 35 and more likely to have chromosomal issues with my eggs. It can be performed between the tenth and twelfth weeks of pregnancy so we can get definitive information much sooner than waiting for the amniocentesis, which is typically performed in the second trimester. It also gives the sex of the baby with one hundred percent accuracy. Sounds great, right? Well, the only problem is that it’s an invasive procedure. I get to choose from a hollow needle through the abdomen or a catheter through the cervix. Awesome. Oh, and it can cost up to $1,800. Yippie.

Because they actually have to take a tiny piece of the placenta, there could be bleeding, cramping, and depending upon the doctor’s level of expertise, a small chance of miscarriage. Perhaps I’m being paranoid but I feel like if I had a miscarriage at this point, it would be my last shot at having a baby. So, this is a big deal.

And assuming all goes well during the procedure, I’m supposed to put my feet up for a week to make sure the placenta heals up nicely. A week? I can’t remember the last time I went an entire week without exercising. Even when I hurt my back, I was walking around daily (albeit very slowly).

Later today, I have another ultrasound to check that everything is going well and I’ll be able to get more information from my doctor about CVS as well as referrals for doctors who have performed numerous CVS procedures since risk goes down considerably based on the doctor’s experience.

I have to admit, being a proactive woman used to planning, controlling and enjoying increases in my strength and endurance, I’m feeling a bit disempowered. I’d like to get to a place where I’m not being bombarded by worst-case scenarios all the time. Perhaps CVS will give me some peace of mind.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

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