Hyperemesis Gravidarum

Today’s post is an informational blog about Hyperemesis Gravidarum. It was co-written with the lovely Eve from Blooming Perfect, who is unfortunately suffering from the condition at present. She approached me a few days ago to discuss teaming up to raise awareness of this horrific and debilitating pregnancy-related condition, and this is what we came up with – an interview of sorts. Eve may not be a doctor, but as a long-time sufferer of the disease I consider her to be an expert.
hyperemesis gravidarum
Like the majority of women, I have suffered from morning sickness. With my first baby, it was barely noticeable. With the second, it was worse – totally knocked me off of my feet – but it only lasted for three weeks. Hyperemesis Gravidarum is a completely different kettle of fish, and I have nothing but respect and admiration for the women living through it. I really feel I have learnt something from this collaboration, and I hope that you take something away from this too.

What is Hyperemesis Gravidarum, and what causes it?

Hyperemesis Gravidarum [HG] is debilitating [and sometimes life threatening] pregnancy sickness characterised by weight loss, malnutrition and dehydration. At least that’s the short version! It affects less than 1% of pregnant women so because it’s less common it’s also less well known about. It is generally said that it’s unrelenting nausea and/or vomiting and is compared to having food poisoning only for months instead of hours! The weight loss it causes is classified as more than 5% less your pre-pregnancy weight although other women I’ve spoken to with the same condition seem to have lost [and gained repeatedly] a lot more. Most women are diganosed by a GP or at hospital when they become so dehydrated they have kept nothing down for hours or days at a time and need IV rehydration. It affects your daily life meaning many women are unable to work or look after the house or their families. Studies have also shown that many women also end up with depression or anxiety because of this condition and in rare cases have a termination as they are unable to cope with the disease. For most women with HG it lasts until 20 weeks but there are a good few women who suffer until they give birth and rarely even beyond this.

It’s hard for people, who either haven’t experienced HG or who don’t know anyone who has, to really understand the severity of the condition.

Unfortunately HG isn’t common and because of this there hasn’t been a great deal of research on causes of the disease. There are suggestions as to what causes it but nothing concrete. I have found there are a lot of things that make it worse like smells, I’m not talking about strong smells which would affect a women with normal morning sickness [MS] I mean slight smells, one day the smell of the tumble dryer made me sick! Stress, anxiety, worry or excitement can also make it worse which is difficult as HG causes stress by itself!!! Again dehydration makes the nausea and vomiting worse and is another catch 22 as the HG causes this also. A lot of women, including myself, find that fluids increase the nausea because of the sensation of them moving in the stomach whereas food is easier to handle as it doesn’t move around so much.

It’s hard for people, who either haven’t experienced HG or who don’t know anyone who has, to really understand the severity of the condition. To try and explain to people that brushing my teeth is horrendously difficult not just having something in my mouth but the taste of the toothpaste can make me vomit. Showering or bathing and generally taking care of yourself becomes a mission impossible!

Isn’t Hyperemesis Gravidarum just a really bad version of morning sickness? Won’t seabands/gingernuts/acupuncture help?

Most people think of “morning sickness” which affects 50-80% of women and think of it continuing a little longer or maybe being sick a little more. I found in early pregnancy, before HG was diagnosed, many friends and family suggested the usual morning sickness remedies such as gingernuts and just getting up and getting on with things. Before it was diagnosed I was told I was being lazy and milking it because I could barely leave the bed never mind not being able to do any housework or care for our 2 year old. I tried the seabands, ginger, Lucozade and various other things to try and calm the constant nausea but it made no difference.

Although I haven’t tried it myself apparently acupuncture has helped with HG although I’m not sure to what extent.

I hardly see her, between the nursery and my mother-in-law and own mum looking after her on the other days she isn’t at nursery I’ve seen very little of my daughter for the last 4 months and that in itself is heartbreaking. I feel like I’m putting my unborn child over the one that’s already here.

Every woman, myself included, that I’ve spoken to with HG have needed to be medicated to be able to keep food and liquids down to just be able to survive. Even with the medications life is anything but normal and many even with medication are still unable to work and sometimes even care for themselves. I was tried on 5 different medications before I found one that worked for me, and every person is different and will find medications affect them differently. The only thing that I find REALLY helps is being hooked up to IV fluids; that’s when I feel most human! Unfortunately I can’t hook them up myself or else I would have no complaints! The medication I’m on [like a lot of women with HG], Zofran [also known in UK as Ondansetron] is used for patients undergoing chemotherapy to stop them suffering nausea and vomiting which explains the severity of the sickness. Like many medications, even though they deal with the issue they also have numerous side effects and many women find that even with the medication they still experience different levels of nausea and vomiting and can still relapse and end up in hospital. I have just come home after my 6th hospital admission for IV rehydration [I'm 21 +3 today] and although the medication helps it doesn’t solve the problem.

What are the risks of Hyperemesis Gravidarum to the mother and baby?

I listened to an interesting radio show last week about HG which talked about Charlotte Bronte and how it’s suspected she [and her unborn child] died from HG. Fortunately death from HG is rare nowadays as we have such great healthcare but there can always be complications.

In the first trimester is obviously the most dangerous time for the growing baby and HG has caused miscarriage or deformation in babies while they are in these crucial stages. However, the new health care reform tax credit is helpful for any expecting mom, making pregnancy care both convenient and affordable.

Dehydration is a daily experience for most HG sufferers, which causes ketone production in the body. Ketones are produced by the body when it starts to break down the fat stores rather than having food/liquid to take energy from. Staying hydrated is extremely difficult for HG sufferers and many live with constant ketones in their urine showing that their bodies are not getting enough nutrition. Although there are few studies on the effect of ketones on babies the studies that have been done have shown that ketones can affect the IQ of a baby which is constantly exposed to ketones while the mother is pregnant.

Nutrition levels again are difficult for the mother to maintain. I was told to eat whatever I could keep down, it didn’t matter about trying to eat healthy because the most important thing was keeping food down. Most HG babies are born fine and healthy, it’s the mother who is affected. Even if you are unable to eat for weeks and are losing weight your baby is normally fine because they take their nutrition from what is already stored in your body but this has an adverse affect on the mother. Bad teeth, bones, skin and hair are all common in HG sufferers as the baby drains the bodies resources and as we are unable to intake the nutrients to replace them our bodies suffer as a result.

Studies have also shown that many women also end up with depression or anxiety because of this condition and in rare cases have a termination as they are unable to cope with the disease.

Most women in developed countries [with good healthcare] should survive with HG, all be it a little worse for wear, unless they suffer other complications.

The other factor is being put on medication, which most HG sufferers are at some point. Every medication can have an effect on our unborn children. Most people say they found it difficult to be medicated in the first trimester because Drs feel there is a greater risk. Being on such strong tablets is scary because you don’t know what it’s doing but yet the other option, of not taking it, is just as bad. I researched every medication I was put on; some were scarier than others. I think being a medication used during pregnancy also means there’s very little information about effects it might have – I mean no woman in her right mind is going to consent to trial a drug during pregnancy! Of course the Drs normally start of with older drugs which have less effect and worse side effects before they’ll try newer drugs which in itself it difficult for the sufferer, I felt like I wasn’t being taken seriously and some of the tablets the effect was scary. On one tablet I became so dizzy and short of breath I had to be put on oxygen while they bleeped the Dr to see me immediately. The drugs in themselves can bring a whole array of unpleasant symptoms for the sufferer, as I mentioned earlier for me the zofran has made me incredibly constipated and given me rectal muscle spasms that would rival the pain of labour!!

What sort of effect does Hyperemesis Gravidarum have on the life and relationships of the sufferer?

When people think about ANY pregnancy related condition they don’t seem to realise there can be a huge impact on, not just the person going through the illness but, the family surrounding them as well. I know for myself my family support has been the only thing that has gotten me through thus far.

I am blessed with a beautiful little girl who just turned 2 this week and for the last 4 months has suffered just as much as I have because of this debilitating condition. My daughter likes to know what’s happening and when, if I tell her she’s going to granny’s house on Thursday she’ll ask me how many sleeps and she’ll count them down so me suddenly disappearing into hospital with no warning sends her into total disarray. She has found this incredibly difficult to cope with and her normal independent personality has changed and she’s become clingy and cuddly – don’t get me wrong, it’s lovely to have a child who finally after 2 years WANTS to cuddle me but the reason behind it breaks my heart. When she’s brought to visit me in the hospital and it’s time to leave she cries; she wants to stay with mummy in hospital because she doesn’t understand. I’ve also been given respite nursery care [3 half days a week], which my GP arranged for me, as I find it difficult to look after her. Initially she loved nursery, she still does once she gets there and starts doing things, but she has again become clingy at the door almost as if she’s afraid that when it’s time to go home I won’t be there. I hardly see her, between the nursery and my mother-in-law and own mum looking after her on the other days she isn’t at nursery I’ve seen very little of my daughter for the last 4 months and that in itself is heartbreaking. I feel like I’m putting my unborn child over the one that’s already here.

When people think about ANY pregnancy related condition they don’t seem to realise there can be a huge impact on, not just the person going through the illness but, the family surrounding them as well.

My partner has also found this incredibly difficult, he comes home at the end of a long day of work and has to start doing my “job” – keeping the house, doing the dishes, the laundry and making dinner and looking after our daughter. He’s exhausted and yet can’t just sit down and relax, even with him working that hard everything is getting on top of him, the cottage is always in a state of bombsite these days which frustrates us both. It frustrates me because I feel like I should be able to do these things and him because he wants to be able to look after me but there aren’t enough hours in the day. In the beginning he got frustrated and angry AT me but as the time has gone on and we have researched the disease together he’s understanding of how much I go through on a daily basis. Even if by some miracle I do get some housework done to try and ease things for him I end up even sicker the following day, which then again makes things harder for him. Not only this but he also misses our daughter terribly as she’s staying with family members so much of the time. Strangely I would actually say we are closer than we have been, initially it did drive a stake between us as we tried to find the best way for our lives to run whereas now there’s a bit more of a routine, all be it a strange one.

Our other family members, my mum, his mum and their partners also face the pressure of trying to support us both. They have taken days off work to look after my daughter because of me being in hospital. My mother-in-law has recently taken to making me meals-on-wheels!!! The lack of nutrients I’m taking in she’s trying to do everything she can and is making soup and bringing it to me in the hope that because I’m not having to cook I can just lie there and eat it and possibly keep it down. Even my landlady [who lives just up the lane] brings me food – I’m just a charity case now!!

I think overall there has been an immense strain on my whole family, not just direct but indirect as well. They haven’t just been trying to look after my daughter but also our unborn child and myself.

How can friends and family best help the sufferer?

I think the best advice I can give is ask the person themselves. Everyone will find different kinds of support may help them, whether it’s taking away the laundry to relieve a partner or husband or doing some dishes for them. Practical support is what *I* have really needed, and have been blessed that I’ve been given so much. I think as well emotional support is equally important, not just for the sufferer but for the partner as well.

Social interaction is something I’ve really missed. There’s an indent in my sofa where I’ve spent the last 4 months, barely moving which shows how little I’ve been out. The difficulty here is actually talking to people and seeing people – especially if you don’t live near friends or family. This alone will contribute to possible depression or anxiety as the person can feel really alone. I’ve found the internet has been a real help to me allowing me to interact with other people, without leaving my indented sofa, and find others going through the same thing.

I think overall there has been an immense strain on my whole family, not just direct but indirect as well. They haven’t just been trying to look after my daughter but also our unborn child and myself.

Going back to the practical aspect, especially if this is the sufferer’s first child, helping arrange things for the new baby could be a help. I’m fortunate that I have a lot of what I need left from my daughter but as I’m having a boy this time I have very little neutral or boys things. I’m touched by the thoughtfulness of people at this time, Imogen [Alternative Mama] has sent me a HUGE bag of baby grows and sleepsuits as well as some cloth nappies for my little boy which has been a huge help. Internet shopping has also helped a lot in me trying to get things for the new baby but I know not everyone is comfortable with this so if a sufferer saw something online they liked they could ask someone to go and check it out in a store for them!

What support is available for Hyperemesis Gravidarum sufferers?

I’ve found very little, for a start so few people have even heard of or understand HG and that makes it very difficult. Knowing people who have been through it, one of my friends was able to give me a lot of information as she suffered with her daughter for her whole pregnancy and I also met another girl while in the hospital who was going through her 4th pregnancy with HG!

My GP was a great help getting respite care put in place for my daughter going to nursery and also trying different anti-emetics [anti-sickness medication] to try and find something that worked. Although having spoken to other HG sufferers this isn’t always the case and sometimes GPs are reluctant to diagnose HG without a hospital admission or they don’t know very much about it.
hyperemesis gravidarum
I, personally, have become involved in online support for people with HG on both a forum [Babyandbump.com] and Facebook groups. This has led me to various websites online, the best being helpher.org which gave me a lot of information including information about medications and the risk on unborn babies. I have also been in contact with some of the Drs in the UK who are trying to do research on HG, Dr Roger Gadsby [pregnancysicknesssupport.org.uk/002.asp] really knows what he’s talking about and I’ve volunteered to help in any way I can.

I hope in time there is more support available for people going through this awful disease. Awareness is the first step.   I hope everyone who reads this takes the time to understand how debilitating it is and I would love for anyone to support any of the research which is going on in both UK and USA or any of the HG charities in any way they can.


We’d love to hear from you. Please share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below.

Images courtesy of Evil Erin and dylancantwell, both @ flickr

Comments

  1. Rosie says

    I found that by reading this personal experience, my understanding and knowledge of such a debilitating illness has increased and I hope with time and research this illness can be eradicated. It is thanks to people like Eve who has written such an informative piece of work, that others will not have to go through what she is going through. Very well done Eve and thank you.

  2. Melanie says

    Thank you so very much for posting this wonderful article. I also have suffered from this with all 4 of my pregnancies. I was never “officially” diagnosed, as I do not have insurance and never saw a Dr. about it. This last pregnancy, I was not at my house when the sickness started and because of the severity of it could not even step out of the door (of my dad’s house where I was at) for 9 weeks. I could not deal with the smell of someone opening the door and if someone had just come in from outside and tried to come close to me, I was grabbing my bucket. My dad and husband and other children “babied” me through it all. They were wonderful. Finally out of desperation, my dad ordered some Zofran for me online (from India)so that I could function at least a little bit. It took the edge off, but I didn’t consider myself done with it all until I delivered my baby. It was hell. And I’ve done this four times. If it wasn’t for this horrible condition, I might have 8 kids by now, instead. I just dread every pregnancy.

  3. Jewel says

    I too have been diagnosed with HG and this is my first pregnancy. The physical toll has been extremely challenging. I am also overwhelmed, however, by the emotional and spiritual effects of being unable to work inside and outside of the home. The repercussions of debilitating isolation cause immense anxiety for me as well. I also feel guilty about being sick because I am a newlywed. I just pray for a happy and healthy baby. In addition, I would really like to know the cause of this disease. Why do some women suffer and others do not? Thank you for sharing your experiences. I wish you relief in the near future and a happy and healthy baby.

  4. Katie says

    Thanks so much for this article! I am on my 2nd pregnancy with HG. My first was exactly what you described: trips in and out of the hospital, experimenting with different combinations of meds (ended up on five), throwing up constantly, regular IV fluids, constipation issues, thoughts that I might die from it, etc. I only tried a second time because everyone kept saying it would be different and they knew right what to do this time. The only thing that’s different is the anxiety is worse this time, my doctor did approve a picc line, and I know what to stay away from. I’m 8wks along and have been fighting this since 2wks. It is a one day at a time battle, some days just minutes at a time. I hate eating even when I’m not pregnant due to HG, and have talked to my husband about getting my tubes tied after this. I don’t think I could emotionally survive another pregnancy. I barely have energy to fight this everyday. I can hardly bring myself to even let someone give me a bath once a week, its so draining. My first daughter was worth it though, and I’m sure this 2nd baby will be too. But I can’t go through this again.

  5. Christie says

    Thank God I didn’t have HG as bad as I could have. Bless you mothers that do and go through multiple pregnancies. You are saints, suffering to bring forth life.

  6. Mimi says

    It’s nice to have an article that is short and covers all the bases. I’m 10+3 with #3, and it’s gotten worse with each one. It doesn’t stop until the end. :( My husband is fantastic, but he can’t make it go away. I pray for every day to go by quickly. I can’t keep up with anything household-wise, and I’m pretty sure I’m a lousy mommy when trying to deal with this. I can’t do this again. Everytime I think about how much time I have left, I start to cry and then throw up. I’m so very sorry for every woman that has ever, or will ever go through this.

  7. Eliana says

    I suffered from HG as well, and many people I know had never heard of this. There is a study going on right now about many aspects of HG, but they need volunteers who did not experience HG to use as a control group (no medication testing, just survey questions and a saliva DNA sample). This is only available to women in the US, but I hope some will volunteer!

  8. Katie says

    I am a 2 time survivor if HG. My sister suffered from it as well with her baby. It is debilitating and frustrating! Luckily, we knew more this time around and were prepared. My doctor did not waste anytime setting up therapy. We also qualified for home healthcare. Once it got unbearable, I had a nurse come to the house and insert an IV for me. I also switched from pill form of Zofran to a continuious pump of it inserted into my leg. My husband had to reinsert it every 24 hours or so for about 2 months. With the pump I was able to keep enough fluids in me that my daily ketone levels were kept at bay.

  9. karen says

    I received a lot from the article. My neighbor which is my daughter’s best friend in the whole world since they were in middle school is suffering as I write from Hyperemesis. This girl is only 21 yrs. old and clearly has not eaten for 4-weeks and during those 4-weeks she was hospitalized for 7 days. She came home a week ago Monday and still isn’t eating. She is 16 weeks. I am literally watching her in essence starve to death. She is a small framed girl but now her teeth are so pronounced that all you see are her teeth first. She looks so weak and I’m always in tears behind her back. About a week ago I talked to her because she was considering termination of the pregnancy. After my talk with her, she did not throw up for 3 nights and she attempted to eat light things…basically crackers and a sports drink. I am so worried for her and the fetus. I continue to pray and stay positive for her. Her mom is a little encouraging but not too much. Always ready to give up. As I type this I am awaiting the results of her doctor’s visit. It looks like to me that she is malnutritioned and on the verge of a breakdown not to mention how the baby is doing or surviving. Just need some encouragement for her. Thanks,

    • says

      Oh my goodness, how awful for her :( I’m so glad she has you supporting her through such a horrible time. I sincerely hope that she gets some much-needed relief from her condition soon.

      • karen says

        Oh thanks so much. UPDATE: She was admitted into the hospital on yesterday. The doctors said that they do hear the heartbeat of the baby but will have to go further with ultrasounds and other tests. Their focus last night and today was to feed her via IV and introduce meds. to ease the gagging reflexes. She has lost 33 lbs. which places her weight at 116 lbs. Send prayers up for her and the baby. Thank you sooooo much!

        • says

          Thanks so much for coming back to update, it’s great to hear that she is getting some proper support now. Fingers crossed that they will be able to get the sickness under control! x

          • karen says

            Thanks so much Imogen. I am so happy to report that the doctor did find medicines to not only control but actually stop her problem. She looks like a brand new person. She went for her doctors follow-up yesterday and I am happy to say that she has gained weight…she now weighs 139. Remember she was down from 149lbs to 116lbs. She even has her baby bump showing now. She comes back and forth to my house so I can see how much better she is getting everyday. It is so good to know that GOD is still in the miracle business. Thank you for your heartfelt concern.

  10. lynnette says

    I too have a 2yr old daughter who goes to nursery half days. I am currently going through a ‘good’ period (we’re on day6 of no vomiting) after being admitted for IV fluids overnight last week. The downside of it is i’ve beenn able to eat and am now severely, severly constipated.

    It feels like this is never ending.

  11. says

    Hi everyone
    I suffered from Hyperemisis from the positive pregnancy test right up to two days after my son was born , i had 19 hospitalisations and was resuscitated three times. I now have kidney and liver dammage , and high blood pressure.
    I am being tested sometime in the next two weeks to see how my heart is going as they think it has been affected too.
    what i want to say is it is SO very important to have a doctor who does everything they can to help you !
    DO YOUR RESEARCH and dont take NO for an answer , for the first 10 weeks i was told what i had was morning sickness and to have ginger, crackers and to eat before getting out of bed.
    It was only when my best friend called every doctor she could find to ask if they knew about HG was i able to finally get some answers.
    The HG doesnt go away at 12 weeks im sorry but to save other women the heart ache when they get to 12 , 16, 20 weeks and it HASNT gone i have to say this.
    that was the hardest part , i would have a number in my mine 12 weeks … and it didnt stop when ‘they’ said it would , so my advice
    PLAN for the worst, and if your HG eases off before birth great!
    ps. im sorry if this upsets anybody i dont mean to be harsh i really am trying to stop people going through what i did and what i continue to do.

  12. Darian says

    I suffer from HG. I have had mono and a severe kidney infection on the same week a couple years ago and that seems like the least painful experience compared to this. I have been in the hospital every week since I was 3 weeks pregnant. I am now on Home Health and have an at home nurse but still unable to hold down most food and liquids. Reading this experience, I felt like I wrote it myself. I pray for any mother who has to experience this rare disease.

  13. Mamz says

    Hi I have read your article and it is fantastic. I also suffer from Hyperemesis and everything that you have spoken about I either felt or went through. My mum kept telling me that she had never been around a pregnant woman with severe vomiting like I have and she stated that I was the only one like it in our family. So I always felt as though I was strange or perhaps unable to carry a pregnancy, not sure if you understand, not so much allergic to pregnancy, but you could say that. Like you have mentioned and now I know that it is not very common or known. It makes me feel much better. I also have been on medication and been very stressed thinking of what it may do to my unborn child. I had my first scan a few days ago and everything seems ok so far, I feel much more relieved and hope that all goes well. It is my second baby. With the first I had vomiting also but didn’t need as many medications trialled on me, whereas with this one I had about 4-5 before I found a suitable one.
    I would love to get involved in what you ate doing I think it’s great. An awareness for other sufferers that’s fantastic!

  14. Amanda Jayne says

    I’m so glad I’m not alone. Most articles don’t express the pain this condition brings. I was told by several co-workers and bosses that every woman gets sick, and they brushed it off. My sick days and medical leave were denied. They said it was not a reasonable request, and to consider the therapy I tried a ton of times, ginger, wrist bands. They all failed or worsened my condition.It’s taken a huge toll on my life.I’m a performer for Disney and have lost so much weight I can’t perform as my character any longer, an already thin mermaid friend, If you catch my drift. I’m 5-6″ and started pregnancy at 132 lbs.I’m now 112 sometimes less. I feel like everyday I lose more of myself.I’m a young mom, I chose to have a child with my fiance at 21, he’s 23. We love kids and thought a child would fit in our lives. Because of our age people assume we are just naive young parents, morning sickness is no big deal. I’ve lived in my bathroom for weeks now.I fall asleep in the tub or on the floor and my fiance carries me to bed.He walks me to the bathroom at night. He’s being so strong and sweet, he holds my hair and if I get sick…we shout out something beautiful about our future child each time.My favorite was him shouting “ughh! Future pee pee on the potty dances.” I laughed so hard. I’m in so much pain, as is he. I know he’s thinking of our growing family…but I can see his pain when he looks at me. I’m not saying motherhood is easy in the slightest, but I never expected being unable to do something as simple as nourish myself. All of you women are strong. Thanks for inspiring me to push forward with a smile and a clothes pin on my nose. :)

    -Amanda Jayne

  15. Gabriella L Elliott says

    You did a fantastic job laying out exactly what happens to us with HG! It brings tears to my eyes knowing that I’m not a crazy person.
    I’m 24 years old, married, on my fourth pregnancy at 7 weeks and a few days and it started early this time. I’ve had it about a week now. It’s awful and it’s progressing worse. Going to the ER tonight to pump some fluids in me and get some anti sickness meds.
    It’s been a very bad day where I can’t hold anything down. It can easily make one feel like there’s no hope and that there’s no light at the end of the tunnel. I know it doesn’t last forever but the end just seems so far away.
    It’s like one of the worst tortures imaginable. Your body slowly killing itself with dehydration and starvation. I’ve lost close to 10 pounds already at about 2 pounds of loss per day.
    This baby was a surprise but we did want to get pregnant again so we could try for a girl. We have three boys currently. I pray that we do have our girl because even if the baby is another boy it’s the end for my pregnancy days. There’s no way I can do this again. I’ll end up with other long term illnesses and I want to be strong for the children we already have.
    I’m bedridden and unable to do any house chores without feeling drained and like I’m going to faint. It seems that with moving the symptoms are much worsened. Also heat doesn’t help either.
    We live in a smaller town so the doctors around here havnt had much experience with HG at all (if any). My last pregnancies I was treated like a was mentally unstable and that I was purposely doing this to my body. Who the hell wants to be puking contantly and whittling away into nothing? I hope and pray the doctors and nurses are more educated this time. :( Last rounds they give me one bag via IV, a pill and sent me home only to come back in a day or two.
    My other two pregnancies my boys ended up healthy (one has ADHD, other may or may not) and full term. I’m terrified though that since it started so early this time that my baby will be harmed. I’ve read about the ketons effects on babies and it worries me as most assuredly my body is already doing that.
    I also want to mention that since my sufferings with HG, I’ve lost 30-40 (if not more) pounds with my pregnancies and have a weight trouble ever since. Last pregnancy one of my molar fillings fell out probably due to the acid from my stomach, and became abscessed and required a Root Canal, and tooth cap.
    I’ve read about women terminating their pregnancies due to HG but I couldn’t do it myself. I do, however, understand why and how they could.
    Hypermesis Gravidarum is such a rare and obviously not widespread disease in the healthcare community here in the US. This needs to change as while this may not kill us, it certainly does damage our bodies and the risk of harm to the baby is also present.
    I’m a little envious of the UK women as their healthcare and hospital system seems to be much more caring for their women. They have lots of HG resources. And they get to birth how they please without getting griped at! :D
    We should all do our very best to give out our stories whenever we can so this disease can be more of a focus instead of just a version of “morning sickness” that’s no big deal.
    God Bless all of you women and I pray we get through this speedily!

    ~Gabriella

    • Melissa says

      Hi Gabriella,

      I usually “lurk” rather than reply to most posts, but I had to reply to yours because your situation sounds very similar to mine. I, too, am a little envious of the attention hyperemesis gets in the UK compared to the US (which is a compliment to our friends across the pond). I am 7 weeks into my 3rd HG pregnancy and I spend much of my days doing my own research, hoping to find some nugget of new info or sympathy to get through the day. This pregnancy wasn’t planned although we had plan for trying again. We also have two boys and hoping for a girl this time. If not, then our family will be complete anyway because I can’t go through this again. I think anxiety has been as bad as the physical symptoms this time because I know what lies ahead, and this time it started even earlier. Very discouraging, especially when you have no family around for support.

      I just wanted to share my experience thus far because your story sounded very similar to mine. Best wishes for you and your baby. I will pray for your emotional and physical strength, as well as the health of your unborn baby.

      Melissa

  16. Hanan says

    Hello , my name is hanan and i am from kuwait . i was diagnosed with HG with my first and only pregnancy and it started from the 2nd month untill even after giving birth to my son. unfortunately in my country they made me suffer through it with no medication since we did not have zofran at that time. It was very difficult for me because i am the only one that suffered from HG and i cudnt talk to anyone about it and i know no one will understand unless they go thru it. the nausea , the iv fluids the endless weeks i spent at the hospital the low blood pressure the fainting and the depression was not easy at all. the experiencce now after almost 4 years was sure worth it since i have a beautiful baby boy , but i would definitely think twice before getting pregnant again. i do have a few questions if anyone can help me out ,,i am still not myself anymore my body is too sensitive to everything now , like when i ovulate or pms i still feel nauseated and i still feel the sensation of whatever goes through my body from fluids and food at times, i am very tired and my body is not strong like it used to be before i got pregnant so i was wondering of the after effects of HG even after 4 years? although hopefully ill be going to the states in december to have a full check up , it could be the same hormone increasing at ovulation but i dont want to be this tired forever. thanks for this beautiful and helpful website where i got the oppurtunity to share my experience with people who actually know whats going on. thanks hanan.

  17. Sarah says

    I can’t tell you how excited I am about finding this site! I have felt so alone in dealing with HG… Although my fiance cant stand it when I say that, and its not meant to hurt him – its just different to actually feel, rather than watch, this every second of every day…

    I live in South Africa and am 16weeks and 6days – and was also told it would be over by the 12 week mark!

    I have battled most with the people in my life. I know they care, and have been supportive.. But then they almost seem to get bored/sick of hearing about it… So now I find myself even more exhausted because I’m trying to pretend to feel better than I do! They just think Im doing all this for attention, that I dont want to get better…!!

    My biggest fear with the HG is how my baby is going to be – altho he/she is growing well, I’m scared that the fact that I have barely been able to eat (let alone take pregnancy vitamins) means that there might be some physical or mental problems – does anyone know if that happens? Im just so scared – i feel guilty for not doing more…

  18. Deanna says

    I too am a survivor of HG. Twice! And even though it was so awful I am still thinking I will have one more child ;). Now someone just nailed it on the head about saying they would just pray each day would hurry up and be over. Luckily I found my body would level out for both pregnancies around the seven month mark, but only then could I slowly wean myself off of medication. I always thought HG had something to do with low hormones before pregnancy. Because it was like I felt sick the day after conception. To anyone out there dealing with this right now, I definatley feel for you , and it is not in your head. It was seriously the hardest part of my pregnancies. Hang in there :)

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