Preeclampsia Q and A

Through necessity many parents of preterm babies become practical "experts" in understanding and dealing with certain health and/or behavioral difficulties. New parents of preterm babies can benefit greatly from what parents before them have learnt. Preemiehelp has enlisted the assistance of numerous parents with preterm babies to help new parents learn from their wisdom and experience.

Parent of preterm baby, Kelly has been generous enough to answer some common questions asked by expectant mothers who have, or are experiencing, high blood pressure and/or preeclampsia. Preeclampsia is a risk factor for preterm birth.

Parent of a preterm baby due to preeclampsia

About Mother of Preterm Baby

  1. Name
    Kelly Brinegar
  2. A little about you:
    38 year old stay home mom, who worked in orthopaedics for 12years prior to having a preterm baby. Married to Tom for 3 years and have an 18 year old bonus daughter in college.

About your Preterm Delivery

  1. How early was your preterm baby born?
    31+3 weeks delivered via ER C-section
  2. How much did she weigh?
    Daughter was born 3lbs 11 oz (1360 grams) at 16 inches long
  3. Was your preterm delivery caused by high blood pressure/ preeclampsia?
    Yes along with abnormal liver and kidney labs. Also diagnosed with gestational diabetes 2 weeks into bed rest. If you could get it, I did.
  4. At what stage of your pregnancy was high blood pressure/preeclampsia diagnosed?
    27 weeks via appointment at primary care physician for an annoying cough. There were no signs at previous obstetrician appointment
  5. How long after diagnosis did your give birth?
    4 weeks
  6. Did you know something was “wrong” before you were diagnosed?
    Not at all. I felt great except for an annoying cough. I only went to see my primary care physician because Tom asked me too, since I was annoying him with coughing for 3 weeks.
  7. Did you have high blood pressure before your pregnancy?
  8. Were you feeling unwell before, during, or after finding out about high blood pressure and preeclampsia?Felt fine up until delivery, other than feeling annoyed about bed rest.
  9. Were you put on bed rest? If so, at what stage of your pregnancy were you at?
    Yes strict bed rest no work after 3 days admit from diagnoses. Various observation and admits during that bed rest time prior to admit for delivery.
  10. What did you do to keep yourself occupied while on bed rest?
    TV, computer, reading and family/friends
  11. Did your preterm baby have any complications following the early delivery?
    Continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) for less then 24hr and jaundice. The time in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) was mostly for growth and feeding. She had a mild eye infection around 3 weeks old.
  12. How long did it take you to recover?
    Blood pressure was fine after 24 hours and labs normal within 48 hours
  13. How old is your preterm baby now?
    18 months
  14. Does your preterm baby have any ongoing issues?
    Not at this time, she's a healthy, sassy toddler
  15. What’s the best advice you could give to a preemie mother in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU)?
    Listen to your instincts, advocate for them and yourself. Take help when offered and trust that the little one is being cared for and get rest; the real journey begins at home when you have no extra hands.
  16. Anything else you would like to share about your experience:
    I never imagined with all the things you read about that preterm delivery would be something we would face. Now starting Life after NICU support has really made me feel like there are so many of us that had to understand it all. Now we can be there for the new moms and dads as they enter this journey. Family & friends will always support but no one really can understand it, until you are a NICU parent.



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Preemie, Premmie, or Prem?

Most babies spend between 38 and 42 weeks in their mother’s uterus. So, technically a preterm birth, preemie, premmie, or prem, is an infant who is born less than 37 completed gestational weeks. 

Read More: Defining Preterm birth



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