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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!

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Postby stuart.r » Thu Aug 07, 2008 06:21 pm

by stuart.r (3 Posts), Thu Aug 07, 2008 06:21 pm

Hi, im from the uk but now live in spain with my wife and 4 beautiful children.Im new to this forum,infact i did'nt even know and still unsure what pe is.My wife,Heidi is 24ish(typical Dad eh)weeks carrying twins and today she was told after she went for a checkup that she has high blood pressure and protein in her urine(the levels we dont know at the moment)and she must go home and rest,they said they will moniter her.Unsure what to do and what this meant i embarked on a wee bit of internet surfing to try and gain some info on what the docs were saying to us,which is when i came across the word preeclampsia.While investigating more i came across your website and a post from Chris.It was whilst i was reading this that it dawned on me that this is something very serious and my heart sank.
I work as a painter on a very small island in Spain and work almost 7 days trying to survive,whilst my wife is a full time mom with 4 the oldest being 8 years and the doctor is saying take it easy.
My worry now is,obviously i dont want anything to happen to my wife i love her dearly.What do i do?do i tell my boss and get time off(how long would it be for?)god knows i really want to,but on the other hand how are we gonna survive financially.My head is spinning trying to take all this in,i need some advice please.
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Re : New to Forum

Postby fiona » Thu Aug 07, 2008 08:38 pm

by fiona (5767 Posts), Thu Aug 07, 2008 08:38 pm

Stuart, welcome.

Do you know what your wife's BP was running at, and what her protein level was? Did she have any issues in her previous pregnancies?

Twin pregnancies are higher risk for preeclampsia and close monitoring is crucial. A dx of preeclampsia is made after two BP readings of 140/90 or higher taken six hours apart and a 24hour urine catch of 300mg or more.

At this stage, we would usually recommend asking for a referral to a high risk OB and doing a 24hr urine test and suggest buying a home BP monitor to keep track of what's going on.

Obvious questions regarding your current situation is what facilities on the island are there should your wife be delivered early? Where is your nearest NICU (special infant care nursery)?

Until you have more info, I would encourage your wife to get as much rest as possible. Do you have friends or neighbours who could watch the kids for a couple of hours here and there? Or any family members able to come over from the UK to help out?

When is your wife being seen again? Please do keep us posted and come back with any more questions.



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Re : New to Forum

Postby summerw77 » Thu Aug 07, 2008 08:44 pm

by summerw77 (1381 Posts), Thu Aug 07, 2008 08:44 pm

Hi welcome to teh forum Stuart. Does your wife have a Maternal Fetal Specialist or a perinatologist? That would be the first place to start. (Its a high risk OBGYN). Yes preeclampsia is very serious, how far is she in her pregnancy? We have posters who deliver 1 lb babies and posters like me who go to 36 weeks or some later with 5 lb babies. The average time from diagnosis to delivery of pre-eclampsia is 14 days, but some of us wait it out for months on bedrest and grow our babies big. Please print our signs and symptoms page and if your wife has any new symptoms, call to report. Do you have a family member who could come help your wife the remaining days of her pregnancy? It would be wise to have your wife join our message board also, and do some research so she also knows what to watch out for. Many posters dont' feel sick until they wake up in seizures in a delivery room. I don't say that to scare you, only to let you know that being proactive in your care is the KEY to SUCCESS! Good care in a pre-ecamptic pregnancy is critical.
Good luck and I hope your wife delivers 2 healthy babies! Please stick around and have your wife join our ask the experienced board!
Is your wife having swelling and/or headaches?
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Re : New to Forum

Postby emmasdaddy » Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:30 pm

by emmasdaddy (54 Posts), Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:30 pm

Hey Stuart ... the ladies here will more than likely be more help but I just wanted to say welcome from one dad to another. We will say a prayer tonight God's Will be done with your wife, your family, and future child. God Bless and WELCOME to the board!
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Re : New to Forum

Postby stuart.r » Fri Aug 08, 2008 08:16 am

by stuart.r (3 Posts), Fri Aug 08, 2008 08:16 am

Hi thanks for replies.Ive been looking at Heidi's medical record book trying to figure it out(all in Spanish)and if im correct these are the 2 bp tests they did yesterday 142/95 and 147/92.As for the protein reading i have'nt worked that out yet as there's so much stuff on here?Theres a section with a word scribbled in pen that looks like it says orina(urine)?and 2 measurements 1st 69.6 and the other 68,these dont mean anything to me,i know my numbers when it comes to c.p.r(first-aid)as i was in the army for a few years but this is just out of my league.
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Re : New to Forum

Postby fiona » Fri Aug 08, 2008 11:44 am

by fiona (5767 Posts), Fri Aug 08, 2008 11:44 am

Hi Stuart,

if they just used a dipstick urine test, whatever presence of protein they found would not be an accurate measure. In the UK or North America, a dipstick reading would usually be marked as +1,+2,+3 or +4. A +1 or more would usually mean doing a 24 hour test (where you put all your pee over 24 hours into a container).

The BPs are diagnostic for preeclampsia, although their severity is dependent on yur wife's non-pregnant BP. Women whose BP sits around 120/80 normally, can often run at 140/90 during pregnancy and be well-managed by close monitoring. If, however, she has a nice low BP usually, those numbers are concerning.

Is your Spanish fluent enough to ask detailed questions and understand the answers? If not, could you find someone willing to translate for you?

I would really be wanting to know how they planned to monitor this pregnancy, if there is a specialist used to dealing with hypertensive disorders in pregnancy and multiple births, and what happens if delivery neeeds to be before 34 weeks.

Can you monitor her BP at home?
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Re : New to Forum

Postby sam » Fri Aug 08, 2008 03:27 pm

by sam (442 Posts), Fri Aug 08, 2008 03:27 pm

hi stuart

welcome to the forum!!, being proactive for your wife and your babies care is a wonderful thing for them, and is to your credit.
I know it must be terribly frustrating dealing with everything in spanish, perhaps some of the spanish speaking ladies here may be able to help you out with translation?? there is a spanish forum on here too.
I agree with fiona, to try and find out your wife's protein levels in her urine now, and also her normal BP before pregnancy.
is it possible to ask for a 24hr urine catch? which will give a much more accurate protein level for a diagnosis of PE alongside the elevated BP.

best of british to you all

keep us updated when you can, take care all of you
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Re : New to Forum

Postby anathor21 » Sat Aug 09, 2008 06:06 am

by anathor21 (519 Posts), Sat Aug 09, 2008 06:06 am

Hello Stewart -

I want to add my own welcome to those you have already received. You have already been given some great advice and thus I don't have a lot to add on the technical front to what has been said.

It sounds to me like you are about to have your hands full in any case even if PE doesn't become critical for you, jumping up to 6 kids is going to make for quite a busy household! I don't know what your plan were for getting help from friends or family at that time, but as suggested by Fiona getting someone to come and help her take it easy now would likely be a good idea.

PE is a serious thing but as you know, not a lot of people know or understand this. Is is very possible that your wife may not feel any worse than she did with her prior pregnancies, or if she does feel different she may dismiss it as being due to twins. So getting her to respect preeclampsia without becoming scared and anxious is going to be one of your challenges. It is a fine line to walk and only you know your wife well enough to know how to approach this. How to get her to accept help so she slows down and rests more.

She also needs to know the critical sign/symptoms so that in case they show up you two can raise the alarm and get to a hospital if needed. It really doesn't happen all that often, but PE can turn very ugly very quickly sometimes and noticing it right away can save lives.

I do hope that your island has some way of providing advanced care or at least of transporting people in need very quickly. If not, even though it would be difficult for you and your family both emotionally and financially, I would consider what options exist to move her closer to a major medical facility (can she live with family somewhere?). At only 24 weeks along, you either have quite a long time to go or may have some very small babies on your hands in the near future.

Best of luck and as others have said, please do keep us posted.
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