I remember receiving a couple of emails and maybe something in the post about the C*STEROID feasibility study, I can’t recall too clearly now. With the first email, I’m ashamed to say I didn’t pay it much attention as I was busy and not really thinking yet about the delivery of my baby! But when I was contacted again in my third trimester and closer to the delivery date, for whatever reason it grabbed my attention. I spoke to my obstetrician about it and she knew about the study and said it was run by reputable people. She also talked me through what it was about. I then spoke to one of the research staff to find out more.
My doctor having confidence in the people running the study and assuring me that it was well run influenced my decision to participate. My sister in law had also just delivered about 4 months before I did and both she and my brother are doctors. I asked them if they knew about the study and it turned out she had participated. That also helped alleviate any concerns I had. My only concern was that I didn’t want to put my baby at undue risk, but I was comforted by the fact the steroid injections being tested in the study were already routinely administered during pregnancy for premature babies to help them.
Although I was not overly keen from the outset as I was busy thinking about other things, once I focused my attention on it (again I’m sorry to say!) and spoke to my doctor and sister in law I became increasingly interested in taking part. I didn’t have reservations per se at the start – more just wanting to find out what it was about and the risks. I was quite keen to help if I could without putting my baby at risk. I think between me turning my mind to it and making the decision it was just a day or two – and most of that time was to speak to all involved. Once I found out about it and obtained the necessary information it seemed an easy way for me to contribute without any real risk of harm to my baby.
My experience of taking part is that it was easy, pleasant and I’m happy to have been able to help. I needed to make two trips to get the steroid injection before my caesarean section, but it was close to my obstetrician and place of work, so I managed to fit it in without too much inconvenience. The midwife who tested my baby’s blood sugar level after she was born was also very responsive, so we communicated well to ensure the blood test was done before a feed without too much effort.
I’m happy to have been able to help and I’m looking forward to finding out the outcome of the research in due course. I think I’m definitely more open to other studies now that I have done this and had a positive experience. I thank those involved for their important work!