New and Very Worried

Are you worried about your partners pregnancy? Has your partner already had preeclampsia? Do you have advice for other dads who could be going through similar experiences as yourself? Post here!

New and Very Worried

Postby jeffcanfield » Mon Sep 10, 2007 07:53 pm

High I am brand new here and I am scarred and worried and very confused by the actions of my wifes OB.

My wife has been having severe headaches for over a week. She has had pain in her abdomen. Her blood pressure has been in the 140 to 175 over 90 to 110.

She called her OB and the OB sent her to the emergency room. (Why not the OB's office). We sat and waited. Finally after 2 hours we were let in and my wife had her urine tested. 1 gram of protein in her urine.

The OB finally comes in and tells my wife that she "cannot have preeclampsia", because my wife is only 19 weeks along.

The OB then asks if my wife has had headaches. My wife says yes and that they are severe. The OB throws her hands up and tells the ER Doc that "these are the worst headaches of her life, so give her a cat scan." OB walks off.

My wife is crying at this point because just before this the OB had told my wife that there is a chance the protein in the urine means the baby will die.

The OB was at the ER for all of 3 minutes. My wife was given a high blood pressure medication and nothing else. No instructions for bed rest, or to see her at her office, etc.

We are going to look for a new OB! If anyone knows of a good one in Austin, Texas please let me know?

The thing that bothers me is that the OB was upset that my wife was at the ER, after the OB told her to go there? Also after reading this afternoon, it seems as the OB should have been much more proactive, knowing that my wife is suffering from headaches, high blood pressure, stomach pain? Why did the OB wait two weeks to send us to the ER?
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby caryn » Mon Sep 10, 2007 07:58 pm

Jeff, those are very high blood pressure readings and that's a LOT of protein. If she's had two readings over 140/90 and has more than .3 g of protein, she's officially a preeclampsia patient -- and yes, it can happen this early. Did they run a 24-hour, or was that "1 gram" from a dipstick?

Headaches can be a sign of central nervous system involvement. Epigastric pain can be a sign of liver involvement. Did they draw bloodwork labs? Has she still got a headache and abdominal pain?

I'll copy this to one of our Experts and see if I can get a recommendation for a maternal-fetal medicine specialist in Austin. In the meantime, is the bp med stabilizing her pressures?

If she does have a headache still, or epigastric pain, it would be best to go back to L&D and insist on bloodwork labs. Print off our Signs and Symptoms page (http://www.preeclampsia.org/symptoms.asp) and take it in with you, and ask for preeclampsia labwork.

Please keep us posted. I know this is scary.
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby fiona » Mon Sep 10, 2007 08:04 pm

Jeff,

your wife's condition is very concerning. I'd just like to reiterate everything that Caryn has said. Hopefully we will be able to find a name for you meanwhile, please do not hesitate to head back to L&D and get a thorough blood work up. I would also request an u/s to see how the baby is doing.

Do keep us posted.
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby kara » Mon Sep 10, 2007 08:20 pm

Echoing the other ladies. Your wifes symptoms are very concerning, and though it is rare, preeclampsia can and does strike before 20 weeks. As Caryn stated, with those results, your wife would indeed be considered a preeclampsia patient. I too would suggest a trip back to L&D (not the ER, but the actual L&D floor), ask for preeclampsia blood work and an ultrasound to check on the baby. Many OB's don't see preeclampsia very often...let alone at 19 weeks, so it is important that you go with her and advocate for her and the baby. Hopefully our experts can get you the name of a perinatologist or MFM doctor who could see after your wife.
Please keep in touch when you can.
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby caryn » Mon Sep 10, 2007 08:31 pm

Jeff, I got this response from an Expert already (wow, that was *fast*):

Your instincts are correct. Preeclampsia can occur this early. When it does, it is frequently serious and often associated with non-pregnant medical conditions. It is very important to assess and follow the fetal growth. While we are rarely successful in improving fetal growth once it starts to slow, poor growth is an important indicator of the severity of the disease and the prognosis for achieving a successful outcome.

He also gave me the name of a MFM who used to be on the Preeclampsia Foundation Board. I will email it to the address you used to set up your profile.
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby catherine » Mon Sep 10, 2007 08:40 pm

I just want to join in here and emphasise how serious preeclampsia can be when it strikes so early in pregnancy. If you are in any way concerned about your wife's condition, or if it worsens even slightly, please do not hesitate to seek medical attention at Labor and Delivery, preferably at a hospital with level III-type facilities (mom and or baby, they are usually academic but all will usually mention this on their web pages). I emphasize L&D because sometimes you might be redirected to the emergency room when less than 22-23 weeks pregnant and this is when you should stand your ground and ask to have your wife seen by the MFM (maternal fetal specialist) who is on call or covering the service. I'm confident that if you make them aware that she currently meets the criteria for a diagnosis of preeclampsia they won't hesitate to examine her.
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby jeffcanfield » Mon Sep 10, 2007 09:31 pm

Thank you all!! I wanted to trust my insticts, and you all have helped me in that endevor.

It is so difficult to say to oneself, "The Doctor is wrong." It goes against everything I have grown up with.

I am so grateful that the Preeclampsia Foundation exists for all of us who are lost and fearful.

God Bless you all!
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby dynamicdoula » Mon Sep 10, 2007 10:26 pm

I think it's fantastic that you trusted your instincts to seek out more information and I personally hope that you and your wife find your way back here, and stick around. I learn something new every time I come here and it has helped me to really be a discerning consumer of medical services (I almost typed 'cervixes' lol... can you tell I talk about them a lot? haha), to give MYSELF the best care at home which prepares and informs me to speak knowledgeably with my medical team, and to filter out information that doesn't serve me or is even dangerous.

Stick with us. :)
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby sarab » Tue Sep 11, 2007 01:10 am

Jeff, I'm so sorry to read of your wife's condition, and even sorrier to read about the "care" she received. You've gotten some invaluable information already - the knowledge and support to be found here is amazing.

Please know that so many of us here are thinking of you, your wife, and your little one, and hoping that you are able to get into see a MFM as soon as possible. Let us know how things are going when you have a minute.
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Re : New and Very Worried

Postby onesock » Tue Sep 11, 2007 08:23 am

Jeff, I am so sorry to hear about your terrible experience...how frustrating that must have been for you to be treated that way. :( I am very happy that you are being that advocate that your wife needs right now and finding a peri that will take control...good for you. You will be in my prayers.
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