Pre-What?

Post On Thursday, June 21, 2018 By Jill Carlo

Pre-What?

Roughly 30 weeks pregnant. Just another normal trip to my OB for a progress check-up on our little girl and myself.

Check in, wait to be called, pee in the cup, check my weight, the normal routine.

Then the nurse checks my blood pressure (BP). She pauses and checks again. She asks if i've ever had high BP before. It`s never been an issue in the past... The doctor comes in and we chat a bit about how I`m feeling, etc. I felt perfectly fine.

We just thought the high BP was a fluke. Maybe anxiety from a stressful job? Fast forward 2 weeks and again, my BP was high. My doctor is now getting concerned and orders a 24hr urine test for me. How fun!  He said it was just a precaution as he just was being optimistic it was from stress and perhaps some pregnancy hypertension. However, he did warn me of what else it could be... Preeclampsia? What?? I had never ever heard of it!

After taking the 24hr urine test, I'm back at my doctor's office for another 2 week check-up. My doctor wasn`t there this time because he had an emergency he was attending to at the hospital. So, I met with a midwife instead.

She checked my blood pressure. She paused and said

"Honey, I don't want to alarm you, but your blood pressure is so high, I'm worried you could have a seizure at any moment. I need you to go the hospital. Your urine test also showed a high amount of protein in it, which makes me believe you have developed severe preeclampsia."

I just sat there and didn't say anything. I think it was in shock. She continued to say how we may even have to induce me that day (this was at roughly 36 weeks). She was even worried about me driving. I was so confused. I felt fine. How could I be close to a seizure when I didn`t feel like anything was wrong at all? She checked my BP one last time and it was still extremely high. She just said "I'm sure me telling you all this is making your BP worse"

You think?!

She tells me to go straight to the ER and that she'll call my doctor and let him know I'm on my way. I leave and call my husband.

In the triage at the ER, they monitor my BP all day and preform a stress test as well. With my BP starting to go down a bit and the stress test results being great, my doctor said I can go home, but to come see him the next day or two.

Phew! The thought of having her induced was terrifying to me. Especially since we were not at all prepared back at home yet. I didn't even have anything packed for the hospital.

Back at his office a couple days later my BP is very high. He said he was worried for my health and for the baby's. He officially diagnosed me with severe preeclampsia and I began to realize just how serious this was. He said we need to induce and soon.

The idea of having my baby girl come out 3 weeks ahead of her due date was terrifying to me, but he assured me that she was close enough to term and would be perfectly fine.

We scheduled the induction for the following week. He had me monitor my BP at home while taking a BP medication and if it ever went over 160/110 again, to call him immediately. Thankfully, it never reached that number again. Close, but not quite.

So, fast forward a few days and I'm at the hospital to be induced. My baby girl clearly didn't want to come out. 2-1/2 (painful) days later, we finally get her to come. She's perfect!!! So much love! Happiest moment of my life!

Now that she was born, my doctor can now really treat me for my high BP.  I'm now 4 weeks postpartum and my BP is still high. Just started a new kind of BP med and hopeful that helps. However, I've now been experiencing awful headaches, daily. The worst of my life. In addition to BP meds, I'm now on headache meds. If the new BP treatment doesn`t help my headaches, I'll have to go see a neurologist.

Clearly, birth is not a cure for preeclampsia for us Moms. Im just so thankful my baby girl is healthy. I fear this will happen again in a future pregnancy. However, my doctor is amazing and if it does, I know I'm in great hands.

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