I started my family later in life, I am now 39 and just had my second daughter in January 2015. The pregnancy was very normal, as was my first. I have always had normal to low blood pressure and have always been normally healthy. A couple days after my daughter was born, my blood pressure started to rise while still in the hospital. They kept me an extra day to see if it would go down, it did not go down. So with restrictions at home and checking in with my OB/GYN that next week, they discharged me. Note that my daughter had been discharged the day before.
Upon arriving home, I felt a little slow and run down, just physically tired. That night when I tried to go to sleep I couldn't lay down without getting short of breath, literally could not breath. I remembered the doctors telling me that if that happened (as a potential symptom of the high blood pressure) to call my OB right away. So I slept on the couch so that I could sleep in an upright position. I would also have to catch my breath when moving around too quickly or being on my feet for short periods of time. The next day I called my OB and she wanted me to go to the ER. The ER diagnosis was Pheumonia and Congestive Heart Failure. After what I have read about many doctors not knowing what the symptoms of this condition are, I know I was mis-diagnosed regarding the pheumonia - they thought this because I had fluid on my lungs which was causing the shortness of breath. I ended up seeing a Cardiologist at the recommendation of my OB. They did an Echo and it showed my heart pumping at only 35 EF. He immediately put me on three high blood pressure medications. My next Echo is in a couple weeks so we will see how my heart is progressing with the treatment.
I am feeling so much better and feel very lucky that this condition was caught so early that I can hopefully make a full recovery. But most importantly, I can be here to take care of my baby girl and her older sister in better health. I'm also glad that I found this site to hear about other women who have gone through the same thing I have. I pray for those who have not survived and hope we can get more awareness out there for women and families who are not familiar with this condition.