Never seen this coming

4 min read

Where to start... This was my third pregnancy at the age of 33. I had delivered my other two boys the total natural way with midwives and no drugs and I wanted to deliver this pregnancy the same. Unfortunately I moved towards the end of my pregnancy and there were no midwives around me without an hour drive. I had my last prenatal appointment with the new doctor two days before I delivered. Durning this last appointment my blood pressure was a tad high but I had been diagnosed with high blood pressure at the age of 30. It was actually lower while I was pregnant then it normally was so my midwives were not concerned about it. The new doctor was concerned and tested me for eclampsia (which the test said I didn't have) and told me I would have to be induced if I didn't deliver at 40 weeks. I didn't like to hear that since I wanted a natural delivery where my body did things on its time. I also talked to the doctor about my huge swollen feet and legs. She said it was normal and would go away after delivery. This being my third pregnancy I didn't feel it was normal. I had had swelling in my last two pregnancys but not to this extent. This pregnancy was much harder on my body then the other two, but the doctors said it was because it was number 3 and my age.

11/10/15 I started having mild contractions around bed time, I wanted to stay home and try and get some sleep before going to the hospital. But my boyfriend was super excited and wanted me to go right away. I held off till midnight before going in. My blood pressure was much higher then it was 2 days ago I think some thing like 140 / 110. The doctors immediately said I need to go on petosin and have my water broke to make the delivery go faster. I was very upset by that and asked if I could just rest for a bit and see if my blood pressure came down on its own. I was sure it was just super high from my boyfriend pushing me for hours to go to the hospital. But they didn't let me rest, I was first hooked up to an iv for petosin and bp meds. My bp went up higher after that. I was then told I needed a second iv for magnesium which I fought and pointed out to the doctor that all of this was just making me upset and raising my bp higher, they did it anyways. My bp raised even higher, then they broke my water. When all was said and done my blood pressure had spiked to 200 / 140. It was the most stressful delivery for me, at one point I remember yelling at the doctor to get her hands out of me. I felt violated and that I had no choices in my delivery.

I stayed in the hospital for several days due to my bp. The first 48 hours I was still on a magnesium drip and iv bp meds. Durning this time I was not aloud out of bed because of the magnesium. I still had major swelling in feet and legs. I again asked the doctor about it. She now said it was from all the iv fluids and would go away when I was off of them. My discharge date was 11/13 and when that day came I had been off of iv fluids for 12 hours but the swelling was not going away.

Right before discharge I changed my new sons diaper and seen there was blood in his poop. He ended up being sent to Pittsburghs Children's Hosptial. Thankfully it was found nothing was wrong with him and he had just swallowed after birth And he was dischared on 11/17. While there my feet and legs continued to swell to the point I could not even fit a pair of shoes on. I took myself to Magee women's hospital while there because I just didn't feel right. My bp was still high and I was given iv bp meds again. They wanted to admit me but I beged them not to because I had to get back to my son. They pumped me full of as many tubes of bp meds as it took to get me stable and released me.

After finally getting home my new son and I had a home nurse. My swelling had finally went away and my bp was finally under control with meds. But I started having bad headaches and nose bleeds and I slept every moment I could. The headaches and nose bleeds were attributed to my bp and sleepiness to my meds. About the end of November I noticed my stomach was swelling back up instead of getting smaller and I got what I thought was a bad chest cold. I dealt with the cold for several weeks... I was out of breath all the time, constantly tired and it felt like I had an elephant sitting on my chest.

11/16/15 was my breaking point with this "cold", I went to the er. I could not breath for the life of me. My oxygen level was very low and my bp was spiking again. they questioned me about asthma. Once they found out I just had a baby they immediately started the tests on my heart and lungs. My lungs were filled with fluid from my enlarged heart which had an Ef of 30. I was admitted in the very early morning. All of this was very confusing to me and I didn't really understand what was going on. The cardiologist came in during morning rounds and said they had to send me to Pittsburgh to see Dr. McNamara because he specializes in my condition and if I make a turn for the worst his hospital can help me. The electro cardio gram was showing my heart getting worse with in hours.

i spent 3 days in the hospital in Pittsburgh and was feeling much better. I could finally breath, I had lost 15 pounds in water build up And my bp was again under control. Fast forward to today my 90 day Ef is 45 but I have also found out that I am 11 weeks pregnant again. Dr. mcnamara is not sure if I will relaps again. But at least I know what to look out for now and I can be proactive.

I am only on two bp meds and a water pill as needed since getting pregnant. I still have tiredness, shortness of breath and dizziness.

My Details

  • Date Diagnosed: 17/12/2015
  • Child: 3
  • Initial EF: 30
  • Current EF: 45

Story By Danyel McGarvie

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