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Midwife puts a scare into us.

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Midwife puts a scare into us.

Postby plastic » Tue Apr 06, 2004 09:18 am

Greetings to all. In the past week or so, my wife has been experiencing a lot of swelling in her lower legs and less so in her face. Her blood pressure has been normal throughout her pregnancy, and again today there was no trace of protein in her urine. She is almost 36 weeks.

However, the midwife became concerned over the level of swelling today during our scheduled visit. She used the phrase "way too much" and said "oh boy" when performing the indentation test on her shins.

We didn't know much about p/e before today, only the three symptoms listed above and information about proper diet we learned in our Bradley class. So when we heard the midwife's tone today, it put a pretty good scare into us. My wife was urged to work only half-days with plenty of rest and we're returning to the midwife in two days for possible bloodwork, non-stress test, etc.

However, when we made an effort to look into the symptoms of p/e, we became surprised at the reaction we saw from our midwife. We understand the severity of the condition from the great collection of stories/info on this site, but with only one obvious possible symptom, we feel like things could have been handled better at our visit today. Simply asking my wife to rest and come back in two days "just to be sure" would not have thrown us into a spiral of fear.

My wife has not experienced vision problems or headaches, nor any of the other symptoms. She follows the diet guidelines. Her sister experienced pretty bad swelling toward the end of her pregnancy as well with no p/e diagnosed.

We plan to keep an even closer eye on things now, but I had to vent about our experience today and thank all of the contributors as we keep our fingers crossed.
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Re : Midwife puts a scare into us.

Postby catherine » Tue Apr 06, 2004 09:44 am

Hi, welcome to the site.

I'm sorry that your midwife's response triggered such concern, however, you must know that "better safe than sorry" really applies to situations that might arise when you are almost full term. It is really great that your wife has no other symptoms, and chances are, that things are going to be fine, albeit uncomfortable, all the way to the end a month from now. Unfortunately, as you'll have read about on this site, for some, it doesn't always work that way, and preeclampsia can "turn on a dime". So, what your midwife is requesting, seems both logical and cautious, and is the response that we would all welcome, were we in your situation. NSTs and blood draws aren't very invasive and can provide a lot of information. Should your wife develop any of the symptoms (visual disturbances, epigastric pain, headache etc.) you'll know that it is vital that they be checked out.

I hope that you don't feel that this in anyway detracts from your pregnancy and birth experience. Sometimes, things don't always follow the book KWIM? You will have worked hard to get to this point, don't be afraid to talk to your midwife about how things might be handled etc. Lots of good luck from here on,

Catherine
Mom to Finn, Lucy (preeclampsia and HELLP) and Chloe.
Moderator HELLP Syndrome Survivors
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Re : Midwife puts a scare into us.

Postby plastic » Tue Apr 06, 2004 10:16 am

quote:
So, what your midwife is requesting, seems both logical and cautious, and is the response that we would all welcome, were we in your situation.
I am very grateful that we'll be ramping up the tests/visits and that we both have a better understanding of what to monitor. I guess I am trying not to be too nervous based on one symptom, and my displeasure with our midwife is probably masking some fear -- fear which I feel wouldn't be so great had she reacted more calmly to rather common swelling. After reading some of the accounts on these forums, I would consider further p/e tests based on the occurrance of swelling to be quite routine.
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Re : Midwife puts a scare into us.

Postby sandy » Tue Apr 06, 2004 12:49 am

Hi Plastic, sounds like Catherine has great information for you. The only thing I have to add is "welcome". Please let us know how you all are doing.

~Sandy/DD born via emergency C at 35 wks/1 day June '03 due to Severe PE/class III HELLP/chronic HBP/asthma
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Re : Midwife puts a scare into us.

Postby laura » Tue Apr 06, 2004 02:21 pm

I absolutely agree, it's good to hear that your wife will be seen more frequently, just to be safe-

I wonder, is it possible for your wife to spend some time in a pool? They say that full body immersion can help push some of that fluid back into the system to be eliminated- I swole up terribly with my first pregnancy and ended up in the bath half the day, it helped with all that fluid! Best wishes, and please let us know how your wife is doing!

Laura
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Mom to Alicia (severe PE) 5/98 and Camille (htn, oligo) 4/03
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Re : Midwife puts a scare into us.

Postby tahoe4 » Wed Apr 07, 2004 07:41 am

I agree with Catherine. I wish my OB had the same response as your midwife during my first pregnancy. I had no signs of pre-e except for severe swelling. I kept telling her the swelling was getting really bad and she kept insisting that the swelling was normal in any pregnancy. She never once warned us of any signs to look for nor did she do any tests for us. Maybe had these precautions been taken I would have been able to carry the baby longer and I wouldn't have had eclampsia as severely as I did.

I think your midwife's response is a good one and it shows that she is being cautious.
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