Baby Ticker

Our Last Non-Stress Test

Bernard @ July 30, 2005, 10:43 pm -- [Week 37, Day 5]

Since July 6th, we’ve been going to the hospital twice a week for a non-stress test (NST) to verify that the babies are still doing okay. Combined with our weekly appointment with the OB, we’ve had three visits per week. The non-stress test is based on the fact that a healthy baby naturally moves around a lot and the baby’s heart rate will rise immediately after moving. If this movement and subsequent rise in heart rate happens at least twice in a twenty minute span, then the baby passes the test.

We had our last NST this morning, and it went fine. Here’s a picture of Agnes hooked up to the monitor. Two of the blue disks on her belly monitor each of the babies. The third blue disk records if Agnes’ uterus is contracting. In Agnes’ left hand is a button that she presses each time she feels one of the twins moving. You can also hear their movement on the monitor itself — it sounds like a burst of static interrupting the sound of their hearts.

Here is the machine that records the NST. You can see that twin A has a heart rate of 136 and twin B has a heart rate of 135. We normally see them in the low 140s. In addition to a paper printout which is faxed to our OB, the monitor is also connected to a computer that records the data as well.

So far the twins have been very good in each of these tests. We made sure that Agnes eats a good breakfast and the babies seem quite active during the test. A good breakfast is the right way to start the day.