What is Hyperemesis Gravidarum?

"Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) is a severe form of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy. It is generally described as unrelenting, excessive pregnancy-related nausea and/or vomiting that prevents adequate intake of food and fluids."

Quoted from the HER Foundation Website

Monday, July 26, 2010

Three Little Blessings

For those who have or have had HG it's helpful to know that other women have gone through the same thing, to know that you are not alone. That is one of the goals for this blog - to share the stories of those women. I asked this mom if she would be willing to share her about her pregnancies. She agreed enthusiastically and sent me the following.

"So here is my story....I got pregnant with my first one while VERY sick with a Kidney Infection. I actually found out I was pregnant while hospitalized when I went septic from the infection. I was told that I should end the pregnancy because we would not survive. I did not. The first six months I could not eat, lost almost 25 lbs (which was a lot because I was skinny to start), and was in and out of the hospital. I thought the extreme nausea was due to my kidney issues. I had a break right around the seventh month and then was back in the hospital in my eighth month with Kidney Stones (due to severe dehydration). My GORGEOUS boy was born in May of 2004. We planned my second child because we thought since I was not sick it would be better. WRONG! I was sicker with this one with NO EXPLANATION AT ALL! It was like living a nightmare. I was in and out of consciousness and just sicker than I could ever describe for the first six months. I would black out upon standing and just weeped all day long. I lost 40 lbs with this one (I didn't start out as skinny). Again I had a break in the seventh month. I was then taken out of work around 9 months due to severe cramping and joint pain AGAIN due to severe dehydration. Just as I decided to stop having children, I was blessed with my third. I found out a few months before this pregnancy that I have a condition called Celiac Disease. It is an auto immune disorder that is triggered by eating gluten. So with this pregnancy I was Gluten Free and it was MUCH MUCH better!!! However, I was still pretty much unable to leave the house and vomited several times a day. If it was my first I would have said it was HORRIBLE but since I had the first two I was very thankful instead. With the third I was sick, with the first two.....I don't even know how I survived! Sadly I had to tie my tubes. I am pretty devastated about it because I come from a HUGE Irish Catholic family with lots of kids. But the damage to my kidneys, gallbladder, and overall deterioration of my body....I had to think of my kids. They need a mom! Plus I cannot have another year of vomiting and missing out on their little lives. HG is the WORST thing I EVER experienced but oddly enough it had the BIGGEST reward in the end!!!!!

I am sad that no one recognizes this condition. With the first two I thought there was something wrong with me. The whispers of the nurses at the hospital "She is fine, she just has morning sickness" or the threats from my employer "I was sick when pregnant too, this is not a valid excuse" I was so alone and so scared. I found support groups in between my second and third so I found support with my third. But I had to quit my job and become self employed because the outside world still won't see that this is a HORRIBLE condition and women need help!!!!!!! Thank you for doing your blog!!!!!!!! Getting the word out is so important!!!"

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