By Christine, mother of two
word itself sounds miserable. It’s severe vomiting, dehydration, and weight
loss during pregnancy. Most women experience some nausea and vomiting during
their first trimester, but for a small percentage of women like me and Kate
Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, those symptoms lasted throughout our
pregnancies. But thanks to Kate, we are more aware of this complicated condition,
and pregnant women are getting treatment earlier.
Just before I was 6 weeks pregnant, I started vomiting. It
was relentless—all day, all night. At first, I thought it was normal, but when
it didn’t stop, I knew something was very wrong. Unable to keep a bite of food
or sip of water down for several weeks, I quickly lost a lot of weight—20 lbs.
to be exact. For me, not a single medication or IV fluid could stop the vicious
nausea-vomiting-dehydration cycle, and soon I saw my 5-foot, 8-inch frame
register at 99 lbs. on the scale. There are no words to describe my fear and my
Some people told me to “just eat.” Others said, “Maybe this
is all in your head.” An emergency room clinician asked—without an ounce of compassion
in her voice—if I was anorexic. “I’m just pregnant, please help,” was my reply.
With my health and the health of my baby at serious risk, my OB admitted me to
the hospital where I was given IV nutrition.
That nutrition support I received saved me—and saved my
beautiful baby—not just once, but twice. When it happened with my second
pregnancy, I was given that same nutrition support even earlier. And that, too,
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