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HELLP at 40+1... no pre-e diagnosis before then

Have you suffered from HELLP syndrome or had a pregnancy complicated by an underlying disorder? Discuss your concerns here

HELLP at 40+1... no pre-e diagnosis before then

Postby becj86 » Tue Aug 16, 2011 07:50 pm

Hi,

Wondering if anyone had this situation? I had what I was constantly told was a healthy normal pregnancy (I complained of swelling and excessive weight gain a lot but was told it was normal, being the middle of summer and later being towards the end of a pregnancy). My BP stayed around 110/60 for the second half of my pregnancy until it was measured at 197/112 when my eyes were swollen shut, I was finding it really hard to breathe and I was vomitting a lot (morning of 40+1).

Luckily, I was diagnosed with HELLP quickly (2 hours after going into emergency) and had a c-section under general anaesthetic 6 hours after that. I spent 2 days in ICU but my son was fine. He went to SCN because it is a rooming-in hospital.

I'm now incredibly scared of falling pregnant again (nightmares) and now at 4months post partum that's a known possibility (got my period this morning). Of course we do take measures to prevent it, but nothing's fail-safe.

Reading all your HELLP stories, I feel so very lucky that we didn't have the early birth and NICU experience or worse, but its scary all the same, especially when there weren't any warning signs I recognised at the time. I can look back and see them (headaches I thought were tension headaches, URQ discomfort I thought was bruising from his constant kicking, swelling that was so bad by the end of the day that I could hardly walk, etc.) but I thought they were all normal parts of pregnancy and couldn't imagine why anyone would enjoy it!
Lucky mother to healthy 1st born son Logan (HELLP at 40+1)
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Re: HELLP at 40+1... no pre-e diagnosis before then

Postby Lee2011 » Fri Aug 19, 2011 10:33 am

**HUGS**

Like you, and what seems like far more than the word "atypical" would have us believe, I developed HELLP without any pre-e. [https://www.preeclampsia.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=85&t=42655]

I think it's perfectly natural to be worried about experiencing HELLP a second time around and while we are at increased risk of it, I believe it's more far likely to develop later, although in cases like yours and mine - it's not necessarily completely clear when it developed the first time! There are many stories of people having successful, non-HELLP pregnancies the second time around, so I think we have to hold on to that hope. I know if I ever fall pregnant again it will be a stressful 9 months just from the worry, and I doubt there's much anyone can do to help that, unfortunately.

Must dash, but just wanted to send you **HUGS**
Mother to baby boy Lee born 12/3/2011 after emergency induction at 38weeks following diagnosis of severe atypical HELLP syndrome. Having come within hours of losing both our lives every smile is a celebration.
Baby sister Paige c-sectioned at 38 weeks with no signs of HELLP :)
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Re: HELLP at 40+1... no pre-e diagnosis before then

Postby becj86 » Fri Aug 19, 2011 07:46 pm

Ahhh... I read your story while I was browsing :)

I relate to not knowing when it started but pretty sure mine started around 30 weeks when I had a constant stitch, only on my right side. That developed into thinking my little man was kicking me in the ribs every time I sat down... I then attributed the constant pain under my ribs to bruising from him kicking me all the time.

Did you have any bleeding early on? I had a week-long bleed around 11-12 weeks and was told I was bleeding from the placenta. Seems from some things I've read that maybe that was the first sign of what was to come. Not that that's the case with everyone who has early bleeding. I just wish there was something to predict it!

I've just started getting the odd tingling and weakness in my right fingers and wrist in the last 2 weeks. I hope its from lying on my shoulder funny and not some sort of delayed response!

Thanks for the hugs :)

My son is just a month younger than yours... 16/4/11. You boy was born on my mum's birthday and the date I was due to be born! Coincidence :)
Lucky mother to healthy 1st born son Logan (HELLP at 40+1)
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Re: HELLP at 40+1... no pre-e diagnosis before then

Postby tree » Fri Aug 19, 2011 09:19 pm

Your story is very similar to mine. My blood pressure is normally really low, so when it went up to 125/80, nobody panicked but me. I wound up with HELLP at 35 weeks after at least a week of terrible URQ pain. We are doing well now. The nightmares stopped a year or so ago, but sometimes they come back when we discuss having another. It gets better.
Daughter born April 2009 at 35 weeks due to Class 1 HELLP
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Re: HELLP at 40+1... no pre-e diagnosis before then

Postby becj86 » Sat Aug 20, 2011 08:59 pm

Thanks tree :)

Glad there's some light at the end of the tunnel. I'm starting to think I could have another child if I was under the care of the OB who caught it within hours of hearing about me (before he even met me) and the monitoring plan was really rigourous. I would have to move, but I really wanted to have more than one child before all this happened and I want my son to have a sibling.

Since mine happened at 40 weeks, even if it did happen earlier or it was picked up before it got life-threatening the baby would probably be close to term. The thing is, now I know what to watch for - I never even mentioned most of my symptoms to my OB or my GP, because I explained them away as normal pregnancy symptoms, result of having moved somewhere hot and humid a short time before I fell pregnant. I also only went to appointments in the morning, instead of showing them how bad the swelling was getting in the afternoons because I had no energy to go out then. I won't make that mistake again!
Lucky mother to healthy 1st born son Logan (HELLP at 40+1)
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