Late HELLP diagnosis
Posted On Monday, September 23, 2013 by Amy
I swear I'll try to make this short, but that's easier said than done!
At just 6 weeks pregnant I was diagnosed with chronic hypertension. When it came time to do the gestational diabetes test, I was diagnosed with it as well, as I beyond failed it. I was referred to a high-risk clinic at that time. I don't remember the exact timeline, as so much was constantly going on while I was pregnant. I was give the 24-hour protein urine analysis just as a baseline due to the chronic hypertension. The results came back and I was labeled as borderline pre-eclamptic. Due to the uncontrollable gestational diabetes, at 36 weeks pregnant, I went in to have an amniocentesis done to see if my son's lungs were developed enough to deliver. What we found was a placenta that was breaking down too early and not enough amniotic fluid to do the amniocentesis. Then they did a non-stress test, which my son failed, so the decision was to immediately induce me. I was induced on August 27th, 2012 but my son wasn't born until August 29th, 2012 at 1:36pm. He was whisked off to the NICU due to his extremely low APGAR scale score and due to him not being able to control his glucose levels. We were expecting that as the gestational diabetes couldn't be controlled with diet, medication, or insulin.
The next morning when I finally got to see him, we were told we needed to sign a form stating that if his platelet count didn't come up and if we weren't around to give verbal permission they would be able to do it. I asked why his platelet count was low and was simply told sometimes it happens but they didn't know why. He also had 2 open sores on the heel of each foot. We were told it was a staph infections. Later he was diagnosed with EB (a skin disorder). He still had some sort of infection though and needed IV antibiotics through an IV so we stayed in the NICU for a week. We were finally discharged and sent home and all was well. The EB was the type he outgrew fairly quickly and we never knew why his platelet count was low, but thankfully he never needed the transfusion.
Fast-forward 6 months or so: I needed to have a colonoscopy done. It was done by the same network of hospitals, though it wasn't the one I had my son at. The day before when I went in for the pre-op the nurse was going over my records. She looked confused and asked me "I see you were diagnosed with HELLP syndrome. Any idea what that is?". My reply "No! No one told me anything about that!". As soon as I got home I got to researching what this was. Come to find out it's what caused my son to have a low platelet count!
Still to this day, a year later, I am still upset at the OB's that I was given care by. They should have told me about this, not let me find out 6 months later at a different hospital by a nurse reviewing my record!
Either way though, I'm glad my son and I are okay, through research I now know how dangerous HELLP syndrome can be. He is my miracle, more so now that the day he was born!