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New here and need a little support!

Are you considering having another child after preeclampsia? Trying again after preeclampsia can be an emotional challenge. You can find support with others who share your concerns here.

New here and need a little support!

Postby blue143 » Sat Mar 05, 2011 11:42 pm

by blue143 (4 Posts), Sat Mar 05, 2011 11:42 pm

I'm new to this board, so here is my story!

During my first pregnancy in 2009, at my 28 week appointment, I complained to my midwife about really persistent swelling in my feet. She took my blood pressure and it was 135/80, which is high for me considering my normal bp is around 110/62. She ordered a 24-hour urine test and it came back positive for protein with a level of 546.

I was put on full bed rest immediately. Each week I had blood work done, two non-stress tests done, a 24-urine test, an OB exam, and a protein urine dip (which always came back negative).

Throughout all these exams, my protein level was usually about 500-600, I never had any abnormal liver or kidney functions, and my bp never exceeded the highest 28 week appointment measurement of 135/80. It generally hovered around 115/65 for the rest of the pregnancy. I did have lots of swelling all throughout my body, especially my face, and gained just under 50 lbs. Not my most beautiful moment in life, and it was hard to even recognize myself given how much my face seemed to change.

At 37 weeks, I was induced, not because I had any severe symptoms of PE, but because it was protocol with my doctor. I was induced using a balloon catheter the night before and pitocin the morning of. The pitocin had very little effect on me and produced NO contractions until my water was broken. And then... BAM! Then I labored for 3 intense hours, got an epidural, and delivered a 5lb 3 oz healthy baby girl after pushing for 45 minutes. My blood pressure behaved all throughout labor and I did not require any mag sulfate. My labor was definitely much easier and less complicated than I was expecting.

So, that's my story with PE. My daughter is now 20 months old and healthy as can be. We just now starting TTC this month and I am really excited. I will be taking a test in a few days and am hoping for a positive! My doctor wants me to take a better prenatal vitamin with DHA and EHA this time around as well as a baby aspirin. I have been taking both of those for the last 2 months and will continue all throughout my pregnancy.

A few months ago I got a blood workup for PE genetic markers and everything came back normal. I also had a 24-hour urine test done to check my kidney function for any signs of disease. My doctor and midwife have mentioned that my experience with PE is pretty rare, so they want to check me for a potential baseline of protein that can be used throughout my second pregnancy. However, that came back normal.

I'm here on this board because I'm really fearful about bed rest again, and having a pregnancy that was so interfered with. I would really like anyone who has had a similar first pregnancy experience as mine to chime in with any thoughts they have and share what their second pregnancy was like. And I also have some questions that seem to have so many different answers between my doctor, my friends, and the web.

Should I take a baby aspirin all throughout the pregnancy, even during the TTC phase?

What is my chance of getting mild PE again?

I'm really happy to find this message board... thanks for reading and looking forward to learning and sharing here!
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blue143
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Re: New here and need a little support!

Postby riehlism » Sun Mar 06, 2011 06:27 pm

by riehlism (655 Posts), Sun Mar 06, 2011 06:27 pm

Welcome to the Forum! Chances of getting again is always the first question we ask. However, it's not one that's easily answered. Your thrombophilia panel came out clean, but I should say there are a slew of blood clotting disorders that have yet to be discovered. I have been through 2 hematologists myself, and they are suspicious of a category of blood disorders, but have yet to find any positive test. This sometimes happens because blood variability is so great, there are tests that haven't been invented to diagnose a certain blood disorder.

I'm sure if you looked online you saw that ridiculous recurrence rate of: 5-85%. Not very helpful, I know.

I was like you in that I was normotensive prior to pregnancy, and continue to be normotensive after pregnancy. My protein was 324, and anything above 300 is diagnostic for PE. I was at that level until everything went completely downhill within a day and a half. My MFM gave me a recurrence rate of 40%, being that I tested negative for blood clotting disorders. In a subsequent pregnancy, the severity of it is typically less. So the fact that you made it to full term is good. While that is the norm, there are women on this board who's PE got worse with each pregnancy. So really, it's a crap shoot no matter how you cut. But moving on to your other questions.

My MFM, OB, and hematologist all suggest Baby Aspirin daily, even while TTC. Preeclampsia is linked to blood clotting and the baby aspirin keeps the blood slightly thinner. Some doctors also suggest it because it will make it easier for the embryo to implant deeply into the the endometrium.
Jasmin: Severe PE/HELLP and delivered at 24+6 & PCOS (29) Hubby Bubby, Frank (29)
Baby Blue stopped in to say hello and goodbye on 6/3/10
Baby Lucas was born on 10/13/11, PE and HELLP-free! Thank you baby aspirin and Lovenox
http://www.ehd.org/pregnancy-calendar.php?id=18192
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Re: New here and need a little support!

Postby blue143 » Mon Mar 07, 2011 06:05 pm

by blue143 (4 Posts), Mon Mar 07, 2011 06:05 pm

Thanks for the reply, much appreciated!
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blue143
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