Severe HELLP in second trimester - should I try again?

Have you suffered from HELLP syndrome or had a pregnancy complicated by an underlying disorder? Discuss your concerns here
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Re: Severe HELLP in second trimester - should I try again?

Postby ozierja » Mon Mar 05, 639579 9:55 pm

Hi Kelli,

I don't post much on here but I have been lurking around since 2006 or so. My story is so similar to yours; severe HELLP, the emergency c-sect under general, DIC, the central line, trying to hold on as long as possible, the ups and downs of NICU and care after coming home. There are several on here who have had successful second pregnancies, I could not but would have if I could. The best thing you could do is to consult with a Maternal-Fetal Medicine specialist before getting pregnant. My information is under the member center, please feel free to contact me if you'd like.

Best wishes and enjoy your little miracle!
Class I HELLP in 2004, Kelly Ann born 10/19/2004, 2lbs, 1oz, at 27 weeks.

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Re: Severe HELLP in second trimester - should I try again?

Postby cgoodi1 » Sat Oct 30, 639576 9:03 pm

My story is not exactly the same as yours... mine has a worse ending. I'm also from Canada but live in Montreal. I got pregnant and had hellp syndrome at 21 weeks. I had all of the same symptoms as you aside from the vomiting which is what led me to the hospital. Upon arriving I had an ultrasound and it was announced that my baby had passed. Two days later I delivered. It was the hardest thing I ever had to go through. As soon as I was given the go ahead I wanted to try again since I didn't get to bring a baby home. I am presently pregnant but am already having some hiccups. I'm only 13 weeks and already I have had some horrible pressure readings. Today my doctor has put me on bedrest. Hopefully it will all turn out ok but Im still worried for my baby and for myself. I've read about other mothers dying and it is a scary thing. I had always wanted a big family but now I am reconsidering. I'm going to see how this time goes but I would be scared if I already had one child that I would pass and leave the baby behind. It's so hard. You also can't live in fear. Sometimes it's mind over matter. I will try to let you know how my second pregnancy turns out. Feel free to message me anytime.
Stillbirth - 21 weeks gestation due to severe preeclampsia, HELLP and IUGR - 15/02/12
Baby girl Aria - Induced due to high blood pressure at 36 weeks + 2 days - 7lbs 3oz - 05/03/13

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Severe HELLP in second trimester - should I try again?

Postby KelliMeyer » Sat Oct 30, 639576 7:56 am

Hello - I am a Canadian living in Calgary. I got pregnant very easily and had all the "normal" issues in my first trimester. At exactly 20 weeks my blood pressure started to sky rocket - but the primary clinic didn't seem too concerned. They started me on blood pressure meds at 23 weeks and the day after - something just didn't feel right. I didn't think the symptoms had anything to do with my pregnancy. I had been having severe migraines for the past 3 weeks but had started vomiting after eating food and I literally thought I was having a heart attack my chest hurt so badly. I ended up going to the hospital after a couple hours of my husband begging. Once I got to labour and delivery, I apologized to the obstetrician because I thought I might be wasting her time. They wouldn't let me eat anything and starting taking X-rays and doing blood tests. But no one told me anything.... At about 11 at night a nice nurse told me they were taking me to the antepartum unit.

Once I was there, they told me to go to sleep and no walking around. I was exhausted and had been given a heartburn medication which slightly eased my pain, but I still didn't feel right. The next morning a nurse came bursting in at 7am telling me I had an emergency ultrasound booked and had to go right away. I started throwing up more and ended up throwing up all over the ultrasound doctor and her equipment. The doctor said to me - your daughter's only 540 grams and she's breached, you're gonna have to think about what you're gonna do. I told her I had no idea what she was taking about.... And she said it was time to call the obstetrician. They didn't bring me back to antepartum, ey took me to labour and delivery and put me in a critical care room which was basically where everyone could see me. The obstetrical came I and told me that I was extremely sick. She told me I already had severe HELLP syndrome and that I would have to deliver or I wouldn't live. I freaked out because the neonatologists came to see me and told me that they often don't like to rececitate 23 week old babies. They started giving me stats. I decided to try and hold on and get to 24 weeks, so they sedated me with magnesium sulfate to keep me from seizing, put on special equipment to help keep me from getting clots - I was carrying about 60 pounds of fluid - I literally looked like the Michelin man and I got steroids to try and get the baby's lungs going. I had my own 24 hour nurse and I had 10s of doctors around me almost all day, poking and prodding me, asking me questions. They ended up putting in a central line through my neck because I was so bloated they couldn't find any veins. They also put in an arterial line because they were doing bloodwork every three hours. It was crazy... I honestly felt my body dying around me and I was in a horrible, painful haze.

I held out for 4 days and made it to 24 1/7 week when my lungs filled with fluid and I could barely breath. The obstetrician said that we couldn't wait anymore, that I could die. The baby was transverse and I was so weak that they decided on an emergency c section and that I had to be put under because my platelets were so low. They literally decided this and had me in the OR within 10 mins. My mother who is an RN told me that the anesthesiologist looked like he was petrified and no one knew if I or the baby would make it.

I ended up with a classic csection, the type that you can never give birth with naturally again - the up/down kind. I was in incredible pain because of the section, but more so because of the painful swelling in my limbs and abdominal. I still had trouble breathing but was put on self controlled morphine. My daughter was born at 550g - 1lb 3oz.

My daughter survived and was in the level 3 (highest level) NICU for over 5 months. She spent 6 weeks on the ventilator, 8 weeks on cpap, 4 weeks on hi flow nasal prongs until we got to low flow. She developed numerous complications including almost dying at 6 weeks. They told me that if she hadn't been such a strong girl, she probably wouldn't have survived. Se came home on oxygen and we spent 7 months with her on oxygen, and now we just have her on at night time.

I was wondering if there is anyone else out there who had a similar experience, as I haven't met one yet whom I could chat with. As well, is there anyone who had sever HELLP in the second trimester? Has anyone subsequently gotten pregnant. I am really not sure if I should ever try again to have another baby. The internal medicine doctors told me that it shortens my life, and that I have much higher chances of developing high blood pressure, stroke or heart attack.

Any help, or comments would be greatly appreciated,

Best regards,
Mother of a little girl born at 24 1/7 weeks (550g - 1lb 3oz) and survivor of severe class 1 HELLP syndrome.

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