What is Hypermesis Gravidarum?
According to ACOG
, Hyperemesis gravidarum is the most severe form of nausea and vomiting of pregnancy. It occurs in up to 3% of pregnancies. This condition may be diagnosed when a woman has lost 5% of her pre-pregnancy weight and has other problems related to dehydration (loss of body fluids). Women with hyperemesis gravidarum need treatment to stop their vomiting and restore body fluids.
What is it caused by and when does it occur?
It’s thought to be caused by a rise in hormone levels but this is still being researched. Typically Hyperemesis Gravidarum appears between weeks 4-6 and may also come back during weeks 9-13. Most women do find relief between 14-20 weeks, though 20% of women will likely need required care for the remainder of their pregnancy.
How is it diagnosed?
Diagnosis can be made when a woman has dropped 5% of her pre-pregnancy weight with simultaneous dehydration or loss of body fluids. Your doctor will run tests to measure your levels of urine ketones, serum electrolytes, and renal function.
Morning Sickness vs. Hyperemesis Gravidarum
|Morning Sickness:||Hyperemesis Gravidarum:|
|Nausea sometimes accompanied by vomiting||Nausea accompanied by severe vomiting|
|Nausea that subsides at 12 weeks or soon after||Nausea that does not subside|
|Vomiting that does not cause severe dehydration||Vomiting that causes severe dehydration|
|Vomiting that allows you to keep some food down||Vomiting that does not allow you to keep any food down|
Signs and Symptoms
- Severe nausea and vomiting
- Food Aversions
- Weight loss 5% of more or pre-pregnancy weight
- Decrease in urination
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- Extreme fatigue
- Low blood pressure
- Rapid heart rate
- Loss of skin elasticity
- Secondary anxiety