Babies: Special Delivery Episode 303 / Little Miracles

Download Format (PDF)

Every day, almost 11,000 babies are born in the United States. That's one every 8-seconds. But every three-and-a-half minutes, a baby is born with complications. From the very minor to the most serious, multiple births, pre-term births, low birth weights, and a variety of birth defects affect the delivery and health of more experiences pregnancy complications. These cases require Special Delivery.

Special Delivery is a series of forty-six one-hour multi-segment documentary-style programs that will explore the drama of real-life pregnancies and the moment of delivery.

From the high-risk maternity ward at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio, this episode of Special Delivery details the stories of six women facing difficult deliveries.

At 22 years old, Erica Rose is expecting her third child and this pregnancy promises to be the most difficult. She’s developed adult diabetes, which means that both she and her baby are at risk. At 34 weeks, Erica was also diagnosed with placenta previa, a potentially life-threatening condition in which the placenta completely covers the cervix. This makes vaginal delivery impossible and the placenta can begin bleeding suddenly and heavily without warning. In addition, Erica’s baby has a congenital heart defect, which will probably require surgery soon after it is born.

Twenty three year old Dana Ellis needs a cesarean because her baby is too big – a complication from her diabetes. Dana was supposed to undergo her C-section in the next two hours, but now doctors tell her she isn’t ready. She didn’t follow her doctor’s pre-surgery instructions. She’s skipped both her meals and the half dose of insulin she was supposed to take. Dana can’t deliver until she gets her blood sugar levels back up.

Twenty nine year old Diane Golson is pregnant with twin girls. She came to the hospital two weeks ago – and hasn’t left. Neither of her twins are growing to their full potential and one baby is a full pound smaller than the other baby. The second twin, known as “Baby B,” is not receiving a normal blood flow due to an anomaly in the umbilical cord. Because the babies aren’t growing or thriving, doctors think they will have to be delivered prematurely.

Nineteen year old Brandi Edwards came in from Atlanta for a friend’s wedding. She’s not due for another 11 days – but she just found out she may not be able to wait that long. Brandi has high blood pressure and is in the first stages of pre-eclampsia, a potentially life-threatening condition that can cause swelling of the brain and seizures. The best way to relieve the threat of pre-eclampsia is to deliver the baby. The question is whether Brandi will be able to deliver her baby naturally, or require a C-section.

Twenty two year-old Shauna Swanson had a C-section with her first baby. She’s hoping she can deliver her second child vaginally, but it’s not going to be easy. Shauna was admitted 24 hours ago after her baby showed low amniotic fluid. Because her blood sugar level is low, she is also spilling ketones in her urine.

Twenty four year-old Leslie Byerson is a week overdue. She’s hoping to have a vaginal delivery. She is four centimeters dilated and everything is going according to plan. Then suddenly, the baby’s heart rate begins dropping with each contraction. Leslie’s dream for a natural childbirth is quickly slipping away.

Special Delivery is produced by LMNO Cable Group, Inc. for Discovery Health. Eric Schotz and Bob Niemack are Executive Producers.