Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

Preeclampsia 101

Although May was Preeclampsia Awareness Month, preeclampsia can strike any time. Keep yourself and your loved ones aware of these most frequently asked questions about this often life-threatening pregnancy disorder. What is preeclampsia? Preeclampsia is a pregnancy-specific disorder that can impact every organ in a mother’s body. Often, preeclampsia is signified by new onset high […]

We Are Survivors: Preeclampsia Awareness Day

May 22 marks the first ever World Preeclampsia Day. Occurring in only 5-8% of pregnancies, preeclampsia isn’t a complication typically on the mind of a newly pregnant mom. Yet, for those it strikes it can be life changing and even deadly. I am a survivor. A survivor of this often unheard of, yet potentially deadly, pregnancy […]

A Mother’s Heart: How to Help it Heal After Severe Preeclampsia

It’s been four years, almost to the day, since I gave birth to my preemie at 29 weeks, weighing 2lb 6oz. Nothing at all like the big, bouncing baby boy I had been fantasizing about. Yet, he was the most beautiful, and tiniest, baby I had ever seen. Being rushed by ambulance because severe preeclampsia […]

Coralee’s Story: The Path That Lay Ahead

My first appointment with my OB in my third trimester started out as a routine check-up, but quickly took a turn for the worse. The first abnormal thing they noticed was there were trace amounts of protein in my urine.

Throughout my pregnancy, I had blood pressures within the normal range, but on this day I had blood pressure readings ranging from 180/130 to 195/145.

The next suggestion that they gave me was doing a “no stress test” to monitor my daughter’s heart rate and my blood pressure for thirty minutes while laying down.

By the end of the test, my blood pressure levels had lowered a little, so they sent me home with an order to buy a blood pressure cuff and monitor my levels every hour to ensure they do not reach those levels again. [Read more]

Being Aware of Preeclampsia

With May being Preeclampsia Awareness Month, it’s important to know the signs and symptoms of this dangerous disease.

What is preeclampsia?

From preeclampsia.org:

Preeclampsia is a disorder that occurs only during pregnancy and the postpartum period and affects both the mother and the unborn baby. Affecting at least 5-8% of all pregnancies, it is a rapidly progressive condition characterized by high blood pressure and the presence of protein in the urine. Swelling, sudden weight gain, headaches and changes in vision are important symptoms; however, some women with rapidly advancing disease report few symptoms.

It also accounts for 15% of all premature births in the United States. I know these facts because last May I sat in the hospital after having my son at 31 weeks of pregnancy. I remember thinking that I was painfully aware of preeclampsia. [Read more]