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.