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Looking for support

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!

Looking for support

Postby newdad » Mon Aug 15, 2005 06:35 am

by newdad (7 Posts), Mon Aug 15, 2005 06:35 am

My wife is pregnant with our first and has been hospitalized with preeclampsia. She is 28 weeks (Wednesday will be 29).We have been in the hospital now since Thursday (4 days). Early in the pregnancy (first trimester or so), she had a blood test that revealed a high AFP level and we were informed that this might be a possibility. The doctors and nurses have been great but I am hoping to get some feedback from others who have experienced what we are going through.

My wife's blood pressure and protein in her urine were the indicators at a routine Dr's visit. Her BP was 156/92 and they said that protein was present. They ordered an ultra sound and 24 hour protein monitoring and blood work. The ultrasound revealed that the baby's growth was slowing. His abdomen was not the typical size. The blood work came back normal and the protein test revealed a little more than 1G.

My wife's BP has remained consistent since being hospitalized (around 137/78 - 141/82). They have ordered another blood test and protein monitor to start today.

The doctors are taking things day by day but do not believe that we will be able to make it more than 32 weeks (they are doubtful that we will get that far).

Being new to the whole pregnancy game to begin with this is has thrown me for a loop. I would appreciate some feedback to let me know what to expect.

Thanks
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Re : Looking for support

Postby anathor21 » Mon Aug 15, 2005 08:10 am

by anathor21 (519 Posts), Mon Aug 15, 2005 08:10 am

Welcome!

It is very hard to say what to expect - everyone's experience is different and the progression of this disease varies widely. No matter what happens, however, you can expect that your DW will need a lot of support and likely you too will need some help.

In terms of progression - (mind you I'm not a doctor, just a dad who has done a bit of reading) - from what you wrote and your doctors are saying it sounds like you will likely be a daddy to a preemie. Most of the actual work at first will be up to the doctors/nurses - you will have to stay strong and positive for your wife - this is almost certainly not the way she expected to become a mother and may feel that she somehow is responsible or a failure.

I recommend that you let the word out (if you have not already) to your 'local support' - i.e. friends/family/church/work that she is facing a difficult time and that this "event" is likely to drag on for several weeks if not months. You will need their support and when folks offer help don't turn them down, but you may want to ask what they are willing to do and then plan to get back to them when you need that sort of help.

For information - this is the best place I've found. Post your questions/concerns and folks will post links to the information if you ask. Everyone here understands that you likely don't have a lot of time to go digging for answers right now. Feel free to send me a private note with your contact info if you want to email/chat/phone directly (just click on the anathor21 next to message and send a private email).

Good luck and do let me know how things go.

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Re : Looking for support

Postby gordon k » Mon Aug 15, 2005 10:11 am

by gordon k (113 Posts), Mon Aug 15, 2005 10:11 am

You're already doing what you can: keeping yourself informed. It's great that you're working with your wife's doctors and nurses as a team. What my wife's perinatologist and nurse did to keep us calm was tell us: "Don't freak out unless we freak out." They never freaked out, and hopefully you can go by the same mantra and stay calm because they're staying calm.

I'm pleased to hear that the doctors and nurses took appropriate actions in advance with their monitoring. This may sound weird, but to me, believe it or not in a way, it's "better" that she's in the hospital so that she has the 24 hour care and monitoring for her condition.

The best thing you can do is stay on top of things and know what's going on with your wife. It's tough not being able to take this away from them, but I think that it's important to just be there for your wife. Stay calm yourself, and keep her calm. I'm glad that you're proactive.

I wish you both the best,
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Re : Looking for support

Postby newdad » Mon Aug 15, 2005 12:40 am

by newdad (7 Posts), Mon Aug 15, 2005 12:40 am

I really appreciate the responses. Often times, we find it easier to cope with a situation when we are able to talk to others that have experienced something similar.

Thanks again.
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Re : Looking for support

Postby akemt » Mon Aug 15, 2005 01:38 pm

by akemt (4961 Posts), Mon Aug 15, 2005 01:38 pm

Newdad,

I just wanted to add my welcome and well-wishes for your wife and baby. You've received some great responses already...quite touching, I think.

To help answer your "unanswerable" question, the average timeframe from diagnosis to delivery is 2 weeks...remember that is an average. It does sound like your wife is in the right place and will have everything possible done to prolong her pregnancy and work toward a good outcome. I know you are caught up in the fears and uncertainty of this time (I would be too), but I am so glad that your wife's condition was caught early enough that this was even an option -that is a great blessing.

I agree with the previous posters -learn what you can, prepare yourselves wherever possible (I tend to live by the "prepare for the worst and be pleasantly suprised when it doesn't happen" idea), and do whatever you can to stay sane and help your wife do the same.

Please keep us updated, ask whatever questions you have, and feel free to vent your feelings here.

Sending my prayers,
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Re : Looking for support

Postby newdad » Mon Aug 15, 2005 02:15 pm

by newdad (7 Posts), Mon Aug 15, 2005 02:15 pm

Again, thanks. My wife has started having some pain in her upper abdomen and in her right side. My fear is that it is edema of the liver. I appreciate all of your thoughts and prayers.
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Re : Looking for support

Postby julie f » Mon Aug 15, 2005 06:16 pm

by julie f (7993 Posts), Mon Aug 15, 2005 06:16 pm

It has all been covered already but, I wanted to add my welcome as well. I am so sorry that you and your wife are having to deal with this.

I'm assuming they're going to run some labs to check liver function? Please let us know when you find out.

Until then, keeping yall and baby in my prayers,
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Re : Looking for support

Postby gordon k » Tue Aug 16, 2005 01:40 am

by gordon k (113 Posts), Tue Aug 16, 2005 01:40 am

Continuously keeping you in our thoughts and prayers. The best we can do is take it one day at a time and be strong for our wives.

Please tell your wife's docs everything that she is feeling and everything going with her. We can be our wives' best advocates.

Again, wishing you the best,
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Re : Looking for support

Postby cassie05 » Tue Aug 16, 2005 01:04 pm

by cassie05 (2243 Posts), Tue Aug 16, 2005 01:04 pm

HI and welcome...I think it is so great that you have come here for information and support. This is a great place. My son was born at 27+4 and 1 lb 12 oz and is now 19 months old and 21 lbs...he was in the NICU for 2 1/2 months but did every well considering how early he was. YOu and your family will be in my prayers
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Re : Looking for support

Postby rachel a » Tue Aug 16, 2005 03:28 pm

by rachel a (2648 Posts), Tue Aug 16, 2005 03:28 pm

Well, I just wanted to send you my well wishes and let you know that we're here waiting on updates.

I think (non-medical opinion) that the doctor's greatest concern at this point will be is he safer inside Mom or outside...as indicated by his growth. I'm sure they will continue to monitor this closely. Take things day by day...because each day is really valuable at this point. Continue to support your wife...this can be overwhelming for the both of you. I'm sending virtual hugs to the both of you!

BTW, have your doctors ordered steroids?? This may aid in lung development (I believe it really, really helped my little guy) if he is taken early.

You both are in my thoughts and prayers!
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