I feel pretty competent when it comes to advocating for my own health. I will stand up for what I think is right and argue when I disagree. Yet, with this pregnancy, I have been far too tired and sick to argue and have allowed my physician to take the lead. Not a good idea.
Despite taking anti-emetic medication (anti-nausea/vomiting) regularly every 6 hours, I have still only consumed around 1000 calories a day, on a good day, for this whole pregnancy. I cannot take prenatal vitamins, anti-depressant/anxiety medications, or anything else except my Zofran. I constantly feel malnourished, fatigued, and without energy. But I felt that because my doctor indicated that I was maintaining my weight, I was not nearly as sick as I originally thought. Wrong. Regardless of my weight gain/loss (or keeping a steady weight), I was still throwing up 2-5 times a day, on medication, which is not healthy.
Last week, I started down a very sick road. I thought maybe it was something I ate or maybe I hadn’t taken my medication regularly enough. None of these was the case. My body was reacting to the beta hCG levels and sending messages, through the brain, telling my body to kick up the nausea and vomiting. So I went 5 days of keeping maybe 1 cup of liquid down and thinking, “well, it’s not that bad because….” and coming up with various reasons, all silly, why I shouldn’t go to the ER or call my doctor. It took my husband coming into the room and saying “you look like you are on your deathbed” for me to finally agree to an ER visit.
The doctor there quickly ordered 2 bags of fluids and assured me they would help me in whatever way they could. After a quick ultrasound, in which we saw our cute baby who is looking less like a monster every day (and more like a bird), the doctor came in and talked with me. He said, “come in whenever you need to be topped off with liquids. You are clearly sick and regardless of your weight loss/gain, we need to keep you healthy and on the right track.” It made me feel 1 million times better in my decision.
With the doctor’s supportive comments, I feel more comfortable in defending my original assertion that regular IV treatment for my HG was, and is, the best course. So, unless I feel significantly better in the next day or so, I am planning on making weekly trips to the ER* and making improvements to my current condition. I feel silly that I needed a doctor’s blessing to make this decision, but I guess that even the most assertive women question themselves and get tired of fighting some times.
*I am really missing UT these days. The town I lived in had infusion services and I only needed my doctor to call in a prescription for me. I was lucky that my doctor there was very well versed in HG and didn’t argue with me when I requested it. Unfortunately, in this small town, there is no infusion services building so I have to go to the ER for fluids. Blech.