In the midst of it

A place where partners, fathers, friends, and family members can discuss experiences and difficulties regarding loved ones' Hyperemesis.

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In the midst of it

Postby izhak » Jan 02, 2005 11:18 pm

Just found this forum via Blooming Awful (http://www.hyperemesis.org.uk/).

We (actually my wife) is currently in her 16th week and in the hospital connected to an IV. She has more or less been there since she was about 9 weeks pregnant. In the past 7 weeks she has been admitted to the hospital 5 times. Each time the stay was at least a week. Most of the times (except the last) she was back in the hospital within 24 hours of being discharged.

After two IVF sessions, this is our second pregnancy. First ended in a miscarriage. In the first pregnancy we had assumed that my wife was so ill due to the embryo/fetus not having developed correctly from week 5.


I have been lucky that the management team at work has been flexible and allowed me to work from home at varying hours. My days are usually as follows:
5:30AM wake up, get on line (to work) and answer emails, etc.
7:30 Take the dog for a walk
8:30 either go to work, or continue to work from home
15:00 go home to walk the dog
17:00 fight rush hour traffic and drive to the hospital to spend some time with the wife
21:00 get back home and walk the dog
22:00 Check emails and do some work
22:30 sleep

Feeling totally helpless in doing what I thought a man was suppose to do. Make his wife feel good, and protect her. The feeling of just sitting on a sofa staring at a TV while she is in the bathroom vomiting for the third time in the past hour. This is one of times where she was actually home for less than 24 hours before we have to go back to the hospital.

My wife has told me several times how much she loves me, and how I am helping by being there with her as much as I can. By loving her, and letting her know that she is not crazy, as some medical staff have hinted. Yet, I still feel inadequate in helping her. Inadequate since I can not make my wife feel well.

There are many worst things, and I am glad, and hope, that we will never experience these. However, at this time, the worst thing I have experienced in my life is the feeling of helplessness.

We live in Canada, and I must admit that the doctor's have been GREAT. The very first time we went to emergency, we were correctly handled. They hooked her up to an IV, and administered Gravol, amongst other medicines to stop the vomiting. Even once the vomiting had stopped, they would not discharge my with until a resident from gynecology had visited my wife.

The resident from Gyno immediately told us that my wife will not be going home for at least three days. HG was quickly identified.

After having read some of the horror stories on this, and other sites, I feel that we were lucky to have gotten proper treatment quickly.


My wife best described pregnancy as a disease. After all, there is no joy to being pregnant.

We will continue the battle with HG and we can only hope that soon the nausea will pass, and my wife and I will be able to think more positively of the pregnancy.

For all the husbands or boy friends out there, we do make a difference. Although we can not help our loved ones physically, we can help in an area which is just as important, if not more. We can help them mentally. Make sure that your wife knows that she is not unique. Let her know that there are many other women out there who have and are in battle with HG. Let them know that they are not crazy. They are sick due to an illness.

Just keep one thing in mind. No matter how hard it is for us, they are the ones living with both the physical and the mental anguish of HG.

Give your wife a kiss and let her know that you love her.
izhak
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Postby bibliojo » Jan 03, 2005 2:49 am

What a wonderful husband you are to your wife! I know that you are probably feeling very useless and frustrated seeing your wife go through all this suffering and not being able to do something to relieve her misery. My husband felt the same hopelessness when I was sick that you now feel. In a matter of days we went from being excited about the pregnancy to him having to clean the house, make meals for himself, grocery shop, pay the bills, take care of me, empty out the various puke buckets strategically placed around the house and in the car etc. in addition to working his job and doing all the other things that he normally does. I'm sure you know all about this! But let me reassure you that in taking care of her you are giving her the strength to battle the HG. In visiting her every day in the hospital you are encouraging her. In telling her that you love her and showing her affection you are supporting her. I used to moan to my DH that I wished he could take my place and be sick for a day and he used to willingly agree with me -- it would have made us both happy. He would feel like he was doing something useful and I would have loved a break from the nausea and vomiting! But of course this never happened but just the fact that he would have taken my place if he could have made me feel better. So keep loving your wife, taking care of her, encouraging her, listening to her and understanding her. The HG will eventually end but the love and attention you give your wife now will pay off later in a stronger marriage. It's one of the few benefits of HG!

May I ask what drugs your wife is on in addition to Gravol? The fact that your wife had to return to the hospital in less than 24 hours 4 out of 5 times sounds like she wasn't being stablized enough in the hospital and/or that they don't have her on effective enough drugs and/or dosages.

Again, let me encourage you to hang in there. The HG will eventually end. You're probably going through the hardest part right now and it will get better. While not promising anything, the majority of women who have HG tend to see their symptoms lessen and/or disappear in the second trimester so your wife could see an improvement in the next few weeks. Give her our best wishes and let her know that if and when she feels up to it to visit these forums. There are many strong and amazing women here that are very supportive and encouraging and they will do all they can to help her get through the HG.

Best wishes,

Joanna
2 HG pregnancies
Lukas - February 2003
Katya - October 2006

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drugs she is on

Postby izhak » Jan 03, 2005 7:14 am

Joanna:

I posted this for all, since others may find this information of use.

the key thing they give my wife is 50mg of Gravol.

When we first get to Emergency, they setup an IV, and administer the gravol over 5 minutes. They will also add Maxaran (not sure on the spelling) and Zantacc (for the hearburn) as needed.

In an IV it is usuallyadminstered over 8 hours (50mg with a drip rate of 125 ml/hour). Between the three, she starts to fell better, although the vomitting may continue for a day. The Maxaran is administered in the IV every 8 hours (over 15 minutes) until she stops vomitting, and does not feel the nusea.

Zantac is administered as needed (but not more than one dose per 8 hours).

Our problem is when she gets home.

At home the best was 50mg pill of Gravol every 4 hours, plus Maxaran every 8 hours (as needed). Nothing overnight while she sleeps. This was at week 13. The problem was that she was told that if she feels well for 1 week, to cut it down. She did that. 3 Gravol's per day and no Maxaran. 2 days later, it all started again. Dec 22 we lost count after 15 vomits.

It is a vicious circle. Once the nusea starts, you can set your watch. The pill goes into the mouth, and thirty minutes later, my dear wife is vomiting again. Thus, the pills never take effect, the nusea gets worse, etc.

Brought her back in yesterday at about 2PM. By 8PM she was sounding better. Due to bad freezing rain, and a dog that needed taking care of, I could not stay much with her.


One positive thing is that she has a friend there who is there for the second time due to HG. They have both become friends, and a support group for each other.

They both have a few things in common.
Both have the same first name
Both are there due to HG
Both did IVF
Both did the IVF at the hospital they are at now
Both are at the same day of pregnancy

The diffenece, is my wife is carrying one child, while the other has twins.
izhak
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Postby Jer&Kar » Jan 03, 2005 12:58 pm

Thank you for sharing Izhak. One great thing about hyperemesis.org is that the husbands aren't ignored and we too have a place where we can share and get ideas.

My wife is on her second HG pregnancy, and fortunately, your wife was diagnosed correctly and the doctor's appear willing to treat her. My DW was on her 3rd trip to the hospital, and her OB was out of town, that she was diagnosed and given Zofran to help treat the symptoms. Even then we were given no information on HG and weren't even told that it was a condition that other women suffer. It wasn't until she became pregnant again, and the condition reoccurred, that we began to research and found so much useful information (especially here). We were then able to go into her OB armed with information and demand that something be done to help. She's currently on 16mg Zofran daily, Unisom (which her doctor still tells her to stop taking), and Vitamin B-6. This seems to be a good combination for a lot of women suffering with HG.

Although she still doesn't feel well, and vomits multiple times through the course of the day, this combination of medication has provided her some stability and some functionality. Although I still try to perform many of the household tasks when I get home from work, she is able to take care of our 20 month old through the course of the day which relieves a great burdan that we otherwise would face had she been hospitalized again.

Keep loving your wife, and be there for her. Through her first HG PG we grew even stronger as a couple and the love and patience that you put in now will be rewarded in the end.
2 HG pregnancies:

Michael Alexander: Born 4-24-03

Little Bundle #2:
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Postby bibliojo » Jan 03, 2005 10:10 pm

Hi Izhak,

I'm sorry to hear that your wife is back in the hospital again. I am encouraged though to hear that your wife knows somebody going through HG and that she has so much in common with her too! Hopefully this friendship will give her strength to make it through the days ahead until she feels better! She is very lucky to know somebody else with HG -- a lot of women suffer through HG on their own and that makes it all the harder.

I was on the same medication as your wife is now when I was sick. I started off with Diclectin at week 5 but that really didn't do anything for me. I do know that it does work for some people though. Has your wife tried it? It's a combination of Vitamin B6 and an antihistamine. Motherisk in Toronto is a great source of information in regards to this drug. (I noticed that someone else gave you Motherisk's phonenumber on another thread.) So, anyway, I ended up taking essentially what your wife is taking now -- Gravol (50 mg every 4 hours), Maxeran (10 mg every 8 hours) and Rantidine (or otherwise known as Zantac - 75 mg in the morning and at night). I had to be stablized and well hydrated for these meds to be effective. I also had to be very careful to take these meds according to schedule because delaying/forgetting (not that I could forget though -- I lived for my pills since even though I still felt awful taking them, I could imagine how much worse would be it without them!!) I started on this combo of drugs at week 8 and was still taking meds up until week 25 of my pregnancy. It sounds like your wife is getting good treatment in the hospital but I question the advice to wean herself off the drugs after one week of feeling good. Since she is only 16 weeks it may be a couple more weeks before she sees the HG go away. She will probably start having some good days sometime soon but will still have bad days. I personally had the severe nausea and vomiting until week 18 after which I was just very nauseous. I didn't begin to wean myself from the Maxeran until after week 20 and then I would take the usual amount of gravol and rantidine but delay the Maxeran an hour and see how I felt and if that worked well I would eventually reduce the Maxeran from 2 10 mg pills a day to 3 and so on and so forth. It can take weeks to wean yourself off the pills -- there are women here that never are completely able to stop taking the pills, they just take a reduced amount. So I would talk to your doctor and ask why there is an urgency to get her off the pills. Maxeran, Gravol and Ranitidine are all safe during pregnancy. In fact, this combination of drugs seems to be the standard for treating HG in Canada. Also, look into Diclectin if your wife hasn't tried it already and see if that is suitable for her. I believe that you can take Diclectin in combination with the other drugs that your wife is currently on.

I hope this information helps and your wife will be able to come home and stay home soon! In the meantime, I hope life gets a bit easier for you!

Joanna
2 HG pregnancies
Lukas - February 2003
Katya - October 2006

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wean it down

Postby izhak » Jan 04, 2005 6:37 am

Joanna:

Thank you for the reply. We have learned our lesson. After 2 hard lessons. Next time she is released, we will talk to the doctor about keeping the Gravol every 4 hours for about 4-5 weeks, as well as the Maxeran.

We may even move into my parent's house for a bit. There seems to be a smell in our house that irritates my wife. I am guessing that it is from the shoes at the entrance. Her sense of smell seems to be better than our dog's at this time. :)


The first was the one I talked about earlier, where she reduced the medication after less than a week of being stable.

The second lesson was this past weekend. She was in the hospital and stable. Good appetite, and no nausea. She was given a weekend pass from the hospital. She was released on Saturday and was scheduled to return Sunday night by 9PM. The thing tha seemed odd, and I blame myself for not having called the hospital was that they told her to take the medication as needed.

I picked my wife up at the hospital at about 2PM. Last Gravol was at around 11AM. By 5:45 she started to cycle of vomiting. She tried to take a Gravol bat 5:15, but that did not last in her body for more than 30 minutes.

We went back in Sunday at about 1PM. She was put back on IV with the meds. I am glad to say that by yesterday (Monday) afternoon she was feeling much better. By last night, she felt no nausea at all. She did vomit 3 times between 7AM and 8AM Monday, but we hope that this was because she was on an empty stomach.
izhak
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Postby bibliojo » Jan 04, 2005 5:45 pm

Hi Izhak,

I'm glad your wife is feeling better. If she stays on the meds, taking them at consistent times and not just as needed (which as you found out is often too late because they'll just come right back up!) she should see some improvement and hopefully you guys will be able to soon get back to your normal way of life and start preparing for the baby! :D It's more than likely your wife will have times when she will still throw up while on the pills, but it won't be as bad as it has been the past few weeks. She'll have good days (not throwing up at all or only once or twice) and bad days (throwing up 5, 6 or more times) but then feeling a bit better again the next day. When it gets really bad again, you'll know -- when she's throwing up several times an hour, unable to keep water or any pills down etc -- that's when you head to the hospital for fluids. Sometimes fluids will be all she needs, but if that doesn't help they will probably hospitalize her again until she is stablized once more.

She's very lucky that she has you to advocate for her. If a husband or a close family member/friend won't fight for the proper treatment, it makes things all the more difficult for the woman who has HG! So she is blessed that she has you! I will keep your wife in my thoughts and please keep us posted on how she is doing!

Joanna
2 HG pregnancies
Lukas - February 2003
Katya - October 2006

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back home

Postby izhak » Jan 13, 2005 6:31 am

My DW has been back home for 6 days now. So far so good. No throughing up, nor nausea. She is taking the following medication (for at least another 3 weeks):

Gravol 50mg
7AM, 11AM, 3PM, 7PM 11PM

Maxeran (10mg)
7AM, noon, 5PM, 11PM

Zantac (150mg)
8AM, 5PM

Diclectin (candy as she calls it) :)
8AM, 2PM, 2 pils at 10PM
izhak
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Postby meg » Jan 13, 2005 8:56 am

Izhak,

I am so happy that your wife is home and feeling better, or at least "controlled." I hope that this tread continues. You and she should continue to come here as often as you need support or information.

Continued health to both of you!
Hugs,
Meg

Mom to Anabel (7), Patrick (4) and Moira Grace (1)
HG Survivor
HG Free since 4.22.05!!!
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Postby bibliojo » Jan 13, 2005 4:57 pm

Hi Izhak,

Glad to hear that your wife if doing so much better! :D Stick to the pill schedule and don't be afraid to continue the meds beyond three weeks. And if she is feeling better and feels ready to come of the meds, do it slowly! You know what happens otherwise!

Here's to your DH getting over the HG soon and having an happy and uneventful remainder of the pregnancy! :D

Joanna
2 HG pregnancies
Lukas - February 2003
Katya - October 2006

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Postby izhak » May 30, 2005 11:01 am

Well, just a quick update. Stick to the schedule. My wife is down to 3 Gravol's per day. However, if she is an hour late, she starts to get that feeling.

Each time she tried to cut down below this, resulted in a visit to the bathroom. :mrgreen:

Our baby is due in a bit over three weeks (June 25 or so). Will let you know how my wife and the baby are at that time.

In the meantine, keep in mind that you (husbands and wives) need to take this one day at a time.
izhak
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Postby bibliojo » May 30, 2005 11:55 am

Hi Izhak!

I've often wondered how your wife was doing...I'm glad to hear that she is doing better! (although I guess that is all relative! I'm sorry that she didn't have any time during the pregnancy that she was able to not take meds and not be sick!) But the end is in site...best wishes for a speedy, easy labour and please keep us updated!

Joanna
2 HG pregnancies
Lukas - February 2003
Katya - October 2006

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Postby IslandDreamer » May 30, 2005 2:33 pm

Hi Izhak,

I'm so glad to hear all is well with your baby, and that the HG will be over soon. Thinking of all of you and looking forward to an update and photo of the baby :D .

Suzanne
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