Pre-Eclampsia Stories - Gloria, Brian & Caitlyn's story.

Caitlyn March 2000
Caitlyn March 2000

Our story on pre eclampsia where to start? Well I already had a very minor kidney condition, and failed IVF, to find that I was pregnant in October 1999 was a very big surprise. Things went well until 22 weeks when my Blood pressure was a little up but the Doctor wasn't too concerned, as we had a family death Brian's Mum. I had some swelling but it was summer. My next appointment was at 26 weeks. At 25 weeks Tuesday night I had an episode of severe epigastric pain and I just took some pain relief, which was just enough to help me sleep. Wednesday I didn't feel well but still managed to go to work but had to go home early. Probably should have went to the birthing unit on my way home. Seen my G.P. Thursday OOPs he did not take my BP as he possible didn't think about P.E. and suggested Mylanta for the epigastric pain and rest which is what I did. But I had a wedding cake to bake and finish decorating which I did Friday and Saturday as I felt OK. Sunday I just felt tired and as I do shift work I went to work. Monday I worked a early shift and my manager asked me if I was OK and I said yes but decided to have my BP checked and guess what it was up 180/100. The midwife rang my Obstetrician and he wanted to see me in his rooms which was a walk across the hospital grounds and have bloods done which I did. I then had to go back to the ward and he organized my transfer to a tertiary hospital of my choice on the Tuesday.

Monday night I was pretty bombed out on drugs and didn't feel very well at all and slept. Tuesday they gave me celestone to help the baby's lungs, and I was transferred to the tertiary hospital. I was very sleepy and slept most of the time and of cause I didn't realize how sick I was. I new that I was going to have a caesarean section, as that was the only way that I was going to get better, they were more concerned for me then the baby. So at 26 weeks Wednesday 8th March 1.05 pm. Our little girl Caitlyn was born weighing 528gms. She was taken to the NICU and ventilated for the next 8 weeks with a few ups and downs, well she has her own story. I was taken to see Caitlyn after she was born and wasn't really interested as I too sleepy because of the drugs. I did manage to see Caitlyn for a short time each day and had frequent information about how she was going and photos of her. I was transferred from Delivery suite to the ward on the Thursday afternoon. By Friday I was more independent and mobile so I was able to stay with Caitlyn longer. Friday the start of the visitor came as I said to Brian I didn't want visitors until I felt better and I wanted to get to see our baby a few times and get to know her before other people did. I stayed in hospital until the following Friday, as they wanted to keep an eye on my blood pressure without blood pressure medicine. In the end they started me on drugs for my blood pressure which I was on for several weeks.

Caitlyn March 2003
Caitlyn March 2003

Every day I went to the hospital and was expressing milk for Caitlyn, it took me about 6 weeks to feel back in good health from the effects of the surgery and drugs apart from the tiredness both emotional and physical. Caitlyn came out of the NICU at 9 weeks and progressed well and eventually came home at 4 months of age, still on Oxygen for another 2 months. It wasn't until Caitlyn was 1 year old that I could go back and revisit what had happened to me, as my primary concern was with Caitlyn and all the care that she needed up until then. I became quite angry with the Medical care that I received at the first hospital I was at, and my G.P. But if things had been done differently we may not have Caitlyn now. I went over and over all the buts and whys, what ifs and other potential outcomes. We now have a very happy and healthy, all be it still small little girl, and are extremely lucky. Gloria and Caitlyn Pegler

Brian's Story

I was quite shocked to here how sick and how close I was to loosing both Gloria and Caitlyn because of Gloria's high blood pressure. When I was told that they were going to deliver the baby I was taken back. What I knew about prem babies which is very little, but just being told by Gloria over the years about working with premmies. I knew that when the Doctor said that he would have to get Caitlyn out, that she would be very tiny. The Doctor said that babies of 26 weeks do very well and he showed me some of the babies in the intensive care, very tiny babies more like Barbie dolls than babies. But he assured me that everything should be fine, and I was sort of relieved, but when she was born the doctor said she was smaller than they expected. I continued to think what if this or that happens. Although Caitlyn was tiny even for 26 weeks she was OK, she did have a few problems and she was in hospital for 4 months she went from strength to strength. It was the happiest day of my life when I first held her but I was very scared about hurting Caitlyn as she was so tiny, like a doll rather than a baby. Now she is a happy cheeky three year old, still quite small but with lots of go she is into everything, and I wouldn't want it any other way!