When to seek help


Chances are, if you’re on the severe end of the HG spectrum, you will need to visit your local emergency department, or GP for treatment at some stage. Knowing when to go to the GP for prescription medication, or ED for fluids and intravenous antiemetics is an important part of managing HG.

If you experience any of the following, we suggest heading to your nearest ED for treatment:

  • Abdominal pain, bleeding, or cramping

  • Difficulty thinking or focusing

  • Difficulty walking or talking

  • Extreme fatigue and very low energy

  • Little if any food or fluids stay down for over 24 hours

  • Little saliva and a dry mouth

  • Moderate or severe headache and/or fever

  • Muscular weakness or severe cramping

  • Repeated vomiting or retching daily

  • Severe nausea that keeps you from eating/drinking

  • Shortness of breath or dizziness

  • Urination is infrequent (over 8 hours) and minimal amount

  • Urine is dark yellow and concentrated

  • Visual disturbances, or fainting

  • Vomit is red with blood or yellow with bile

  • Weight loss of 1 kilo or more in a week

Dealing with health care practitioners

The lack of experience with HG can even extend to doctors, midwives, obstetricians and ED nurses. Presenting at hospital for fluids and antiemetics can be a particularly difficult process for some women. You may be made to feel as though you are exaggerating or imagining your symptoms - or wasting the time of the ED staff. That could not be further from the truth. You have every right to seek support from your hospital and should feel empowered to speak up about any mistreatment or lack of empathy you encounter.

Direct people to this website, print out any information you feel will be useful and take along a diary, if you’ve kept one, to illustrate the severity of your condition. If you feel like you’re not being taken seriously you can ask to speak to a patient liaison, Nurse Unit Manager, or member of the management team to escalate the situation. If you aren’t well enough to advocate on your own behalf, or feel you’re not getting anywhere, please get in touch with us so that we can support you.