I'm new to this board and I am so glad to have found a forum where we can all share our experiences. In some ways, reading what others have gone through makes me realize how fortunate I am that my experience wasn't worse than it was. Some of the stories I have read on here are truly heartbreaking
. Like many of you, though, I still feel jilted out of what should have been a normal, happy experience. And I sort of hate the fact that there's a "survivors" board for something I had!
I went in to L&D on Valentine's Day, which was the day I hit 37 weeks, with high BP and a painful, nauseous feeling in my upper abdomen. I was so fortunate to have a wonderful nurse who immediately ran all the right tests. I knew something must be wrong when they took my water away, and I figured I'd finally developed Pre-Eclampsia since my BP had been slightly elevated for a couple of weeks. Shortly after that, my doctor showed up in triage and said, "What are you trying to do, have a baby or something?" He then explained that it was either my gallbladder or this thing called HELLP Syndrome. If it was the former, we'd talk to the surgeon; the latter, baby had to come out. Of course it turned out to be HELLP, and our little girl would be joining us sooner than expected.
I was immediately hooked up to the Magnesium Sulfate drip (ick) and given an emergency epidural before they even induced me because my platelets were about to drop below 50,000 (when I arrived at the hospital that morning they were 175,000). The stars all lined up in our favor given the circumstances, and ten hours after being induced I delivered a healthy, beautiful girl. Not having ever heard of HELLP before this was probably a good thing, because once we finally started reading up on it we realized how scary it can be! My platelets dropped to 45,000 at their lowest, which I've learned puts me in the most severe class of HELLP and at higher risk of developing it again in subsequent pregnancies. After a very long week in the hospital, they finally let me go.
My doctor called my case Superimposed HELLP Syndrome since I did not have Pre-Eclampsia. I'm curious to know how many of you had HELLP without Pre-Eclampsia? I think it is much more rare to develop it this way, but I was very fortunate to be in the care of people who recognized what it was right away. I can't believe what some of you went through with doctors not taking you seriously!
Thank you for all of your stories - it is so nice that there is a group who really understands the experience of HELLP.