Posted On Tuesday, December 18, 2012 by Kelley
I have read many of these stories and am absolutely heart broken. My son Gray was born on August 21, 2011 at 36 weeks. His delivery process began one week before when I noticed that my stomach was very tight...hard as a rock. I was very tired and had pain that would come and go in the upper and right side of my stomach. I drove myself to the hospital twice that week and admitted myself into L&D. My blood pressure was elevated slightly, but they sent me home both times without any other instructions. I felt silly that I had driven myself up to the hospital and there was nothing wrong with me. When I got home that morning from my second trip to the hospital I started feeling bad again and was having a hard time breathing. I tried to wait until my OB's office opened to call them, but I couldn't stand it another second. I felt like I was having a panic attack.
I got to my OB's office and he was in surgery so I met with his nurses. They hooked me up to a monitor and the baby seemed to be doing very well. They sent me for an EKG to check my heart. Everything was normal...again...I felt like a hypochondriac! That afternoon I went home and started feel better. My husband asked my mother in-law to come and stay with me for the weekend so that I would not be alone. The next day I woke up and felt great! We went and saw the movie The Help (very odd) and towards the end of the movie the stomach pain came back. I went home after the movie and tried to take a nap. The pain got worse so I got into the bathtub and let the water run for hours. Again, I started feeling better so I got up and put my PJ's on. Not 5 minutes later the pain came back and was the worst I had felt yet. I went back into the bathtub for about 30 minutes when my mother in-law came in and said that we were going to the emergency room. When I arrived I had a slight fever (101) and they did blood work. This is where they finally noticed that my liver enzymes and platelet levels were abnormal.
They took me up to labor and delivery where they monitored me until morning. They took more blood samples throughout the night also and noticed they were drastically going in the wrong direction. The OB came in at 8:00am and told me that they were going to deliver the baby...in 15 minutes! At this point my body was shutting down. The nurses were not able to get another IV into my vein because they were no longer visible. I went back into surgery where I had 2 medical teams. They told me that I would wake up with a tube in my mouth to help me breath and not to try to remove it. I had several blood and platelet transfusions. When I woke up from the surgery they had my son in a spaceship-like incubator next to my bed ready to wheel him off to the NICU at another hospital. Gray was in the NICU for 11 days due to "bad blood" that he received from me and also his lack of lung development.
I am happy to announce that my son is 16 months old and developing very well. My story is one of the happy one's, but I am sharing my story because I was completely unaware of what HELLP was and the symptoms that go along with it. I am 11 weeks pregnant with our second child and very anxious to say the least. I realize that there is a chance of HELLP reoccurring with this pregnancy but I am somewhat at ease knowing what to expect. My first appointment was last week and everything looks good so far!
Ethan will be turning 3 at the end of this month (October). The month of October always brings up some scary memories and emotions for me... I never thought I would have a difficult pregnancy or labor. After all...