by email@example.com (322 Posts), Thu Mar 11, 2010 11:46 am
How should patients with a history of anxiety talk to their doctors about possible preeclampsia symptoms?
I am 34 years old and 29 weeks pregnant. I have 2 children already, both boys, and both pregnancies were healthy and normal. This baby is a girl.
I was diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum in my 2nd month. Currently, I am feeling much better and have even lowered my zofran to 8mg / day.
I also have anxiety and depression for which i take zoloft 150 mg / day (for years), but have weaned off it for my last trimester. I am obese and have been most of my life, but weigh a few pounds less with this pregnancy than my last due to the hyperemesis. I was a smoker for about 12 years, and quit completely 3 years ago. After quitting I was able to go up stairs without breathing heavy.
For the past 3 weeks, my blood pressure, usually 114 / 70, has been testing 120 - 125 / 78-85. My feet, ankles, and lower legs get very swollen and stay that way for 24 - 48 hours at a time. My hands swell slightly, enough to make my rings not fit. I am having trouble breathing, and get out of breath just reading to my son. I cannot lay on my back and sleep with my feet up to alleviate the swelling, because I wake up gasping and feeling like someone is sitting on my chest. Last week I went to L & D after calling my doctors office, and they said I was fine, only with slightly elevated uric acid in my urine. everything else was normal, including my blood pressure which dropped while I was there to my normal levels. I then went to my obs office a few days later because 1 ankle / foot was way more swollen than the other, and they said everything, including my uric acid, was fine, but I had gained 6 pounds in a week. My doctor ordered an echocardiogram and PFT test, which i took, but will not get any results until i see her again on 3/4. She also ordered support hose, which I will be picking up in a few days.
My problem is that I just don't feel right. I feel like my body is telling me that something is wrong. So I research what I am feeling to ask questions, but I feel like my doctor is not taking them as seriously because I am off my anxiety meds. It seems the general attitude with everyone (sometimes including my husband) is that I read too much into things because of my anxiety and worry too much about any little thing. But I have been pregnant 2 x before and have never felt this off. I never had any swelling in my hands / feet until I was about 37 weeks along, and even that was minor, only if I was up walking around a lot. My blood pressure, even with my anxiety, was always low, and I can feel the difference when it is elevated to what it has been testing, even though that is a good blood pressure for other people (slight dizziness, heart beating faster, on edge, loud and multiple noises REALLY bother me - which is totally untypical of me). I never had this much trouble breathing, even when i was a few pounds heavier.
I am hoping that you can tell me if what i am experiencing is typical of early preeclampsia, or is it just typical of pregnancy. Should I keep researching and pushing for someone to take me seriously, or should I sit back and either get worse or deal with what i am feeling since it is normal. Other than this issue, I have always been happy with my doctor and her responses to me. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, as I feel like I am in limbo here just waiting to either get really sick or feel really silly for worrying. Thank you for any info you can provide!