Sara's pregnancy was doubly blessed — with twins. However, the placenta was prohibiting proper nutrition and, at 29 weeks, an ultrasound revealed that one of her babies was experiencing restricted growth and extremely low weight percentiles.
Nancy Binford, MD, Ob/Gyn
Due to a pre-existing blood clotting disorder (antithrombin deficiency), Sara had consulted closely with Nancy Binford, MD, Ob/Gyn (Balcones Ob/Gyn), before becoming pregnant. Dr. Binford went on to lead a team of specialists including David Berry, MD, Perinatology, (Austin Perinatal Associates); Beth Hellerstedt, MD, Hematology (Texas Oncology); Miguel A. Escobar, MD, Hematology (Gulf States Hemophilia & Thrombophilia Center at Houston); and Rebecca Porras, MD, Anesthesiology (Capitol Anesthesiology Association).
At 32 weeks, it became apparent that the babies would need to be delivered early. Sara was admitted to Seton Medical Center Austin to help manage her antithrombin deficiency in the weeks leading up to the birth. The medical team hoped to deliver the twins two weeks later. However, the day after Sara was admitted, the heart rate of the underdeveloped baby decelerated and Dr. Binford immediately scheduled a C-section. Within a matter of hours, Dr. Binford had safely delivered both babies, and she and the medical team were able to prevent Sara from experiencing any complications from the antithrombin deficiency.
At birth, Caroline weighed in at 4 lbs 2 oz, and Penelope was 2 lbs 7 oz. Both girls were immediately transferred to Seton Austin's Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) where they stayed for five and a half weeks. Nathan Thornton, MD, Neonatology (Pediatrix Medical Group), treated the girls during most of their hospitalization. "He kept us fully informed and patiently answered our many questions," Sara said. "Dr. Thornton and the NICU staff — particularly the girls' primary nurses, Sharon Burba, RN, and Shelly Brewer, RN — took incredible care of our girls and made a stressful situation much easier, and we're still in touch."
Caroline and Penelope are now healthy and happy with no lingering effects from their premature birth, and Sara no longer needs medication for her antithrombin deficiency. She and her husband Justin "couldn't be more grateful for the care provided by Dr. Binford and everyone at Seton."