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I Wish I Listened to My Gut

May 04, 2021 By Valentina Gaviria

I Wish I Listened to My Gut

I started off with a normal and healthy pregnancy and my original due date was April 20th 2021. I had no previous medical conditions and never had high blood pressure.

Things took a turn very quickly when I went in for my regular prenatal appointment at 32 weeks and my blood pressure was elevated and I was diagnosed with gestational hypertension. I was sent home with no medication, just to come back later that week for an ultrasound and NST. I went back that same week on a Friday and did not pass my NST, but my ultrasound looked normal. I was asked to give a urine sample to test for protein in my urine. The test came back positive, so the doctor seeing me that day decided it was best to admit me and do a 24 hour protein test. After 24 hours my protein was extremely elevated and my blood pressure kept rising to 150/80. I was diagnosed with Preeclampsia.

I was discharged after 24 hours again with no medication, just to monitor my blood pressure and if it was over 160/90 I had to call my OBGYN office. I was told I would have weekly ultrasounds from now on and will be induced at 37 weeks. I went home and it wasn’t until midnight that same day where I started having bad headaches and started feeling dizzy. I decided to check my blood pressure and it was 177/90. I immediately called my OB office and the operator who answered said he would page the OB on call and will have them call me back within 20 min. It was 30 min and I had not received a call. We rushed to the hospital.

Once I arrived at the hospital my blood pressure had raised to 186/110. I was immediately given magnesium to prevent seizures and was admitted now being diagnosed with severe preeclampsia. I was also given steroids to help my babies lungs mature. I was told I would now be induced at 34 weeks as they cannot wait any longer. A few days later, I started having really bad headaches and blurry vision that wouldnt go away with medication. My bp was steady in the 150s/90 range.

Three days later with chronic headaches a team of doctors came in to my room and told me given my symptoms they need to induce me today at only 33 weeks and 2 days, because I could have a seizure at any moment. I was first given pills to start the labor after several hours with I was still not dilating the OB said they will be inserting a foley bulb to help expand my cervix and given Pitocin as well. Three hours later I started to bleed out and my blood pressure went so low my babies heart started to drop. I was immediately given medication to bring it back up and my baby started to stabilize right after.

My OB said they believed I had a placenta abruption and would need to do a C-Section. I said I did not want a C-Section and the doctors agreed to wait and see if my bleeding would stop since my baby looked happy on the monitors. I stopped bleeding and started dilating very quickly, I went from 5 cm to 10 cm in the span of 30 min. I pushed 3 times and out came Emma screaming and with her eyes wide open. I got to hold her for 2 min before she was taken to the special care nursery where she stayed for 4 weeks learning how to regulate temperature and learning to bottle feed.

Right after delivery I couldn’t see through my left eye, I was taken to get an MRI as they believed I had a stroke. Everything looked normal, I was then seen by ophthalmology who confirmed I had a retinal detachment due to the high blood pressure. I am now seeing a retinal specialist who confirmed I would regain minimal vision on my left eye and the damage is permanent. Looking back at my 24th visit with my OB I told my OB I had gained 20 LB in 4 weeks and my feet were extremely swollen to the point where my shoes did not fit. She told me I should see a nutritionist and the swelling was normal in pregnancy. I told her I worried since my mother had preeclampsia when she had my twin sister and I. She said she was not worried as preeclampsia is more common in twin pregnancies. I wish I had listened to my gut.

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