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Assistance during bedrest

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!

Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby sweetiesuzy » Tue Feb 15, 2005 06:47 pm

Check out this sticky about taking bps:

http://www.preeclampsia.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=321

I hope this helps a bit.

Take a deep breath and take each moment as it comes. You are involved and on top of how your wife is feeling. Remember - she knows her body and how she feels. Always call if there is any deviation/change in anything. And can you research any other OBs in the area that may be willing to meet you guys? Maybe your pediatrician has another suggestion? Just throwing around thoughts here...

Huge hugs,
Suz

------------------------
Aaryngston ~ 3/25/95
Chloe Rose ~ 10/26/01 Stillbirth
Samuel Isaac ~ 12/30/02
Laura Elise ~ 7/19/04

"Friends are quiet angels who lift us to our feet when our wings have
trouble remembering how to fly"
-Marion Beatty
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby fiona » Tue Feb 15, 2005 07:11 pm

What a nightmare - and you are handling it so well. I also get really fed up with nurses lying me down for bp readings. I'm with you on this one and, in any case, it must be sensible to take it the same way every time to get an accurate picture of what's going on.

I hope you and your wife find someone you can have confidence in very quickly - this is too serious a condition for her to feel she can't seek help. Is there a patient liaison person at your hospital - they act as go-betweens between yourself and the medics in order to diffuse potentially difficult situations and make sure the right care is given.


Fiona
dh Tom
ds Nate 12/8/97 - 14/8/97 26 weeks severe pre-e IUGR 1lb
ds Jay 4/11/98 30 weeks pre-e 3lbs 11 oz
no 3 due 15/6/05
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby gordon k » Tue Feb 15, 2005 08:14 pm

What I would do--I'd call the hospital (L&D) of the perinatologist that you do like, and make sure that the attending perinatologist knows what's going on. Move beyond "normal, non-high-risk OBs." Any doctor/nurse that rolls your eyes at you at this point or tells you not to worry about the bp--tell them to please note in your wife's chart that they refused to test or admit her, and have them note that they didn't think that her bp was cause for alarm. My wife's doctor (a perinatologist), never questioned how we took her bp--high bp is high bp. When my wife developed preeclampsia, she went from feeling fine, to 210/115 and not being able to see in the period of a few minutes. I say this not to scare you, but to be aware.

When my wife was pregnant, we only listened to her perinatologist--luckily in our case, all of the nurses, other attendings, and residents referred all decisions to him. Just for you and your wife's peace of mind, in the morning, if at all possible, forget all the other docs and focus on the perinatologist.

Loving your wife and making sure that she is comfortable (and not pushing any of the wrong buttons) actually goes a long long way. Hang in there, and if the blood pressure is high, it's high, and make enough noise so that your wife is treated by someone competent (a high-risk perinatologist that you both trust). Focus on the peri, and sc*** all of the others that are stressing you and your wife out.

Good luck to you, please keep us posted.

Gordon

Gordon(38),
DW, Norlisa (35)
essential hypertension diagnosed before pregnancy, successfully treated with atenolol, post-partum preeclampsia
Joseph/Josephine Our Angel in Heaven (9/16/02)
Twins Mary Frances and Samuel (a.k.a. Frankie and Sammy) 38 2/7 weeks, 5/26/03
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby hfwarner3 » Wed Feb 16, 2005 01:52 pm

Well, one more day of baby growing. :-)

We talked to the Peri again today and they do not have any appointments open next week at the Kennesaw office next to our hospital. Instead, we will need to go back to the other hospital again. My wife is unhappy with that, but she is just glad that the peri is in the picture and engaged. We already setup the appt after that at our hospital, so we should be good from there. They also have a chart setup for her at both offices, so they will know what is going on if we have to head straight to our hospital.

She already had an appt with the OB set for tomorrow and she is going to keep it. She will drop off the 24 hr urine and ask that the peri get a copy of the results. Her plan is to show up, let them check her out and take her BP and go home. If they admit her, we will call the peri. If they try the "hook you up to monitors for a few hours and send you home" thing again, she is just going to go home and ignore them.

It is her body and I have to listen to her for a sense of how she is doing. She says she is feeling worse today but she not having any black spots or flashing lights today, so I am just keeping an eye on her. Her head is "killing her" all the time now. It hurts so bad that she is sick to her stomach much of the day and does not want to eat. She has been a trooper and eating anyway and just trying to stay calm with the pain. She stopped taking the Tylenol because it wasn't doing anything to stop the pain anyway.

I just got home and have not taken her BP yet since she went right into the bath to relax when I walked in the door. She had to go about 1 hour with the kids without anyone else here. I doubt she spent that whole hour on the couch. I want to give her some calm down time before I check it.

My plan at this point is to keep her calm, try to deal with all this behind the scenes crud myself, and try to get the peri in the driver's seat by next week. Just like the stock market, past history does not guarentee future results, but in the last 3 pregnancies, she still had 2-3 weeks before it got *really* bad, so I am hoping that we have at least another week to ease control over. If not, well, I will deal with the OB at that time if it comes to that.

That is all for now. Another day and the baby is a little bigger. That makes it a good day.
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby gordon k » Wed Feb 16, 2005 08:26 pm

Keeping your wife calm is a good thing, however, constant headaches are not. I'm not sure if you told your peri everything that is going on (excruciating headaches, black spots and flashing lights--although you said that stopped, lack of appetite) but I highly suggest you do so. That hopefully may accelerate your appointment.

Like I said in my last post, my wife went from okay to extremely bad in a matter of minutes. I hope that (and it sounds like you are) you are familiar with the signs and symptoms to look out for. Again, not to scare you, but my wife seemed cognizant when I took her to the hospital with her post-partum preeclampsia--she had a really bad headache. I come to find out that she doesn't remember anything from the time she vomited at home, to lying in the hospital bed. So please, keep an eye on your wife's symptoms.

Again, I'm glad that she's in tune with her body, but please err on the side of caution.

Thanks for keeping us posted--hang in there, keep trying to do the right thing. Your wife might not say it now--but what you are doing is very much appreciated.

Gordon

Gordon (38),
DW, Norlisa (35)
essential hypertension diagnosed before pregnancy, successfully treated with atenolol, post-partum preeclampsia
Joseph/Josephine Our Angel in Heaven (9/16/02)
Twins Mary Frances and Samuel (a.k.a. Frankie and Sammy) 38 2/7 weeks, 5/26/03
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby fiona » Wed Feb 16, 2005 09:02 pm

I just want to echo Gordon. I know when I got really sick, there was a point I just couldn't bear the drs and nurses coming near me. I felt so sick I just wanted to put my head under the covers and hide. What I didn't know (the first time) was how close my organs were to shutting down.

The headaches sound really worrying to me and I'm not sure just how sensitive any of us are to our bodies beyond knowing we're not well. She was lucky to get two or three weeks before - I was having an emergency c-section two days after I was admitted. I know you're not happy with all the care and advice you've been given at the hospital, but please don't take unnecessary risks. Good luck tomorrow.

Fiona
dh Tom
ds Nate 12/8/97 - 14/8/97 26 weeks severe pre-e IUGR 1lb
ds Jay 4/11/98 30 weeks pre-e 3lbs 11 oz
no 3 due 15/6/05
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby lucy » Wed Feb 16, 2005 09:39 pm

I agree the headache sounds worrisome, you however seem to be taking excellent care of her its good that you are staying in charge of things Drs often listen better if their is someone to help back the mother. Anyhow just wanted to say good luck and update us when you get the chance.

Lucy -Expecting a girl due date April 30,2005 supposed to be induced at 36 wks though so end of March begginning of April
Proud mommy to Sebastian Orpheus stillborn at 26 wks due to pre-eclampsia we will always love and never forget you beautiful baby boy!
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby hfwarner3 » Thu Feb 17, 2005 07:22 pm

Another day ... another update.

We went back to the OB practice today ... and saw a different OB! Even though he has been at the practice forever and the last two kids were delivered at the practice, we had never seen him before ... and we loved him! He was nice - genuinely nice. He was concerned. He asked us questions and actually listened to what we had to say. He read her history from the last 2 births. Both my wife and I clicked with him and really liked him.

Now on to the visit. 156/98. The new OB wanted to send her straight to the hospital and my wife objected saying that she had actually been feeling better the past couple of days. He had her lay down for 20 minutes and came back to check on her. Laying down - 124/66. Sitting up - 138/82.

He took the 24 hour urine, drew blood to compare against it (I am still not sure how that works) and agreed to let her go home tonight with a promise that she would stay in bed until her got the results back from the lab tomorrow. If they look ok, he is going to let her stay home over the weekend since she has an appointment with the peri on Monday. We have a follow-up appointment with him for next Thursday.

I got to speak with him for about 5 minutes. When I asked him what "red flags" I should be looking for, he sighed and told me, "It is as much a feeling as a science experiment." He told me that her BP was higher than we want but he is encouraged that having her lay on her side will still bring it down. (Notice that he had her sit back up to take the BP). He went on to say that the headaches worried him and he really did not like the history with the black spots in the vision and the blacking out. He told me that I had to keep an eye on her and listen to what how she described her condition.

If the headache becomes unbearable, she needs to go to the hospital. If she gets the black spots, hospital. If she blacks out, hospital. If she starts vomiting due to the head pain, hospital. If the BP gets over 150/90 and having her lay down for 20 minutes does not bring it back down, hospital. I finally feel like I have "ground rules" that we all agree to.

I have to admit that I am a little torn. My wife wants to delay her hospitalization as long as possible, but she doesn't want the baby to die either. She thinks she will be okay to Monday, but she did admit that she expects to go in next week.

I know that it will be hard for her to be in the hospital alone for that long and I understand her hesitation, but at the same time, I would feel more comfortable for both her sake and the baby's if she was there.

I will be working from home tomorrow and, since I work for a bank, Monday is a holiday. Since I will be here with her myself the next 4 days, I am willing to hold off my insistance a little longer.

Overall, I think it was a good day. Our little girl is a little bit bigger and my wife is feeling a lot better about the situation.
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby gordon k » Thu Feb 17, 2005 08:06 pm

Sounds like you have the ground rules--follow them. They seem consistent with what my wife's doctor told her. Regardless of what your wife may want to do, follow the ground rules. Like I've said before, when my wife had her preeclampsia, she was awake and aware at the time, but now, she doesn't recall anything. If you have to, make the decision to take her. You need to be strong, these are good ground rules, follow them, listen to this doctor. And no matter what your wife may want to do, remind her that she's on bedrest and make sure she lays down.

Good luck to you, thanks for the update.

Gordon

Gordon(38),
DW, Norlisa (35)
essential hypertension diagnosed before pregnancy, successfully treated with atenolol, post-partum preeclampsia
Joseph/Josephine Our Angel in Heaven (9/16/02)
Twins Mary Frances and Samuel (a.k.a. Frankie and Sammy) 38 2/7 weeks, 5/26/03
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Re : Assistance during bedrest

Postby hfwarner3 » Fri Feb 18, 2005 10:35 am

I agree with you. I have no problem making the decision when I need to. You have to keep in mind that I am in the middle and need to be confrontational only when absolutely required - on all sides, including my wife.

She does not want to be in the hospital. Hospitals in Atlanta are notoriously over-crowded, which plays a part in this. If her BP is 160/100 and they send her to the hospital, they will put her in a bed on her left side and run lab work. If the lab work comes back fine and her BP comes down under 140/90, there is going to be pressure to send her home to free up that bed.

If the symptoms get to a point where we cross the ground rules, I can not confront anyone I need to and say, "Here are the rules you gave us. Here are the rules that have been 'broken'. Why would you even think of sending her home? What have the rules changed to now?" Malpractice anxiety kicks in about that time 99% of the time.

If the red flag goes up, we go to the hospital first and call the doctor second - no matter what my wife says.

Having said all that, it has been a strange day. She is feeling pretty bad today, but nothing that would 'break the rules'. Her BP is all over the place. Lying down, she is 90/60. When I took it sitting up after a potty break, she was 140/86. An hour of lying down later, she was back to 90/60.

I am going to get the couch setup for her again this afternoon and run to get movies while a friend of hers comes to visit. Between that and TiVo, we should be set for the night. Her parents come tomorrow, so I will finally get a little break.

Gotta get downstairs and make some lunch for everyone.
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