by kara (6614 Posts), Wed Nov 21, 2007 07:13 pm
It's great to see a husband coming here to check these things out! That's the first and best thing you can do. Do you know what her BP reading was...the numbers? The combination of protein and hgih BP is concerning, and it depends on what those values are as to how concerned to be, and what the next steps would be. If the blood pressure is near 140/90, or higher, the concern is potentially greater, especially if she normally has lower pressures. A week can be quite a long time, dependant on those readings. Buying a BP monitor and logging is a good idea. We suggest taking the pressures 2-3 times a day, around the same time each time (ex: 7am, 12pm, 8pm..) Requesting a 24 hour urine catch is the most accurate way to determine values of protein int he urine. A diagnosis of preeclampsia consists of 2 BP readings of 140/90 or higher, and 300mg of protein on a 24 hour test. If your wife normally has very low pressures, a rise of 30/15 above her normal would also be cause for concern.
Finding out what those numbers were, including the protein reading will be helpful. The next step is to get to the consultant or OB...preferrably a specialist. I know we have some others that are more familiar with your health care system in the UK, so perhaps they can be more helpful.
http://www.preeclampsia.org/symptoms.asp Become familiar with the signs and symptoms. Any report of headache that won't go away with tylenol, flu like symptoms, feeling off, pain that is in the upper right quadrant of the torso (usually quite intense), very dark colored urine, a weight gain of 2 or more pounds in a week, swelling in the face, hands, eyes, lips, fingers...particularly if it is worse upon waking in the morning, decreased movements from the baby, are all worth a trip to the labor and delivery ward at the hospital and a call to the consultant.
Stress will not cause blood pressures to go up and remain up, and most women here would rather be aware (especially the signs and symptoms), because they knwo their body,a dn know when something is not right. I would urge you to share theses signs with her, so she can be aware and help decide if something is worsening. The stress will not cause her to get worse. And have her start doing kick-counts for the baby.
Some women develop preeclampsia and muster along for many weeks. Some can make it to 37-38 weeks which would be considered full-term. Others require intervention earlier and must deliver prematurely. Natural delivery is the first choice, but sometimes a c-section becomes necessary. The most important thing is to get a healthy baby here, with a healthy mom. The only way to stop the progression of the disease is to remove the placenta (which means delivering baby). And often times it is healthier for mom and baby to have baby be born, even if it means a premature birth (as is was in my case).
Unfortunately there is little rhyme or reason as to how a woman's body reacts to the disease process, and what to expect. It is often a day by day situation.
I am happy to hear that your midwife has noticed these symptoms, and is going to monitor closely, hopefully under supervision of the consultant. I know that i was quite calm about the situation when I was diagnosed because I actually felt quite fine, and didn't see what the big worry was. Little did I know that preeclampsia can be very dangberous and it has the potential to move quickly...or slowly.
Let us knwo about those numbers, and we will try to help you guys along.