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My Delivery with POTS

May 10, 2011 - 1 comments

During my pregnancy I had so many worries about my delivery as many of us do. I worried about my low blood pressure, passing out, my heart stoping, the epidural, my baby being healthy, etc... I had a strict birthplan and I constantly checked my hospital bag to make sure I had everything ready. Those things made me feel more prepared especially taking the birthing class with my dad as my support partner. Maybe all the worrying and planning prepared me for my delivery or maybe I just worried over nothing, it's up to you to descide. Here is my story.
On March 10 around 1:30pm I started having painful contractions that were very irregular. I assumed they must be Braxton Hicks. Hours go by and my pain has increased but the contractions are still very irregular. Then I use my mucus plug and I start to get shooting pains in my pelvic area worse than I ever experiences through my pregnancy. We called the doctor who said to go to the hospital but I didn't have to rush.
So when we get there I am four centimeters dialated and I walk around the halls until they can get a room ready for me. Before I know it I am already 6 centimeters dialated and I recieve the epidural with no problems at all.
The nurse just tells me to get some rest and I do. I fall right to sleep so happy to finally be in real labor, that the epidural went well, and that I am about to be a mother.
A funny thing happened that I have to tell you. when I woke up from one of my naps I couldn't feel my right leg and when I tried to move it...it fell off the bed and I couldn't pick it back up. I laughed so hard and had to ask my sister to help me. She kindly put it back on the bed for me and called the nurse to help me lay on my left side for a little while.
Keep in mind that the side you are laying on gets more numb than the other so if you have a lot of time try to keep rotating from side to side so the medicine is balanced on both sides.
At six o'clock am the nurse told me I could start pushing. This was difficult since I could barily even feel my stomach muscles but I was aparently doing a great job.
The doctor came in not long after when I started crowning. And get this! When my son's head started to cone out it actually tickled! I was laughing because it tickled! Once my son's shoulders were out I could see him and I pulled him out and brought him to me. He is the most prescious thing I have every seen in my life, my little prince.
My delivery couldn't have been more perfect. I got to share it with my father, mother, and sister, and I got to be the first to hold my handsome baby boy! The doctor was surprised at how well it had gone he told me "you should have many babies."
I hope all of the moms-to-be with POTS have a delivery as smooth and wonderful as mine. It was a great experience and after such a wonderful delivery maybe I will have another child some day. That will have to wait until I find a man who loves me and my son as his own who will stick around of course, but that is a different story. For now I'm just happy to have my healthy, strong, and happy baby all to myself. :)


FootNotes:
- I typed this from my phone so it might not be up to par
- The doctor did break my water for me at 6 centimeters
- My underlying condition for POTS w/ hypotension is a small heart and mitral valve redundancy. This can be helped with exercise and may even dissapate my condition entirely over time and effort
- Every case is different when considering POTS, pregnancy, and/or delivery so do not use this entry as fact for yourself. You may use it as an inspirational story, theory, guide, etc...
-Always ask a doctor before you try anything new and don't be affraid to get second, third, or fourth opinions.


I hope this was helpful and good luck!

My Life with POTS

Nov 17, 2010 - 2 comments
Tags:

POTS

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hypotension

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postural orthostatic

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tachicardia

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my life

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Pregnancy

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syndrome




If you have POTS you probably know what it feels like to have every doctor roll their eyes at you until they see your symptoms first hand, and if you don't then you can see how rare it really is.  (POTS) Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome is still a mystery and has no cure.  There are treatments and I have heard stories of people growing out of it.  I was on Fludrocortisone (a steroid commonly used with POTS patients) for about a year and a half but the side effects I experienced were too much to bear.  I experienced severe pain all over.  No one could hug my without me crying, even the clothes I was wearing hurt touching my skin.  I couldn't take it anymore and decided the symptoms of POTS were worth the risk.  I slowly got off the medicine and then I was back to passing out on a regular basis.  

By increasing my intake of water and salt I was able to get back to a more normal life.  I still pass out but usually I can sit down or lay down before it happens.  I cannot participate in sports let alone walk up the steps without having my heart racing but I have been able to maintain my POTS with more success as time goes on, however pregnancy is a whole new adventure.

Passing out is the biggest problem I have had with POTS but my blood pressure comes in close second.  I experience what my family calls POTS episodes.  My doctors don't know what to make of it and I have not heard of anyone else having these experiences.  These episodes cause chest pain, palpitations, weakness, lightheadedness, trouble breathing (sometimes no breathing), occasionally blue lips and feet, cold to the touch, and ultimately very low blood pressure.  The only way to help in these situations is to sit down with feet propped up, a blanket over top of me, fuzzy socks on my feet to help retain body heat, and start really concentrating on breathing until the episode is over.

The cause of POTS is still unknown however there are theories.  Two of these theories could have contributed to my POTS.  One; I have had too much radiation.  Ever since I was very young I was in Dance, Gymnastics, and Cheerleading.  With these came a lot of injuries which resulted in many x-rays.  I have had more than 30 serious injuries that each had several x-rays performed.  Two; something snapped in my neck that shouldn't have.  I went to the chiropractor 2-3 times a week to relieve pain from old injuries.  There was a day that my neck pain just wouldn't let up no matter what I did so when I went to the chiropractor he tried something new.  It felt rather painful when he did it, numb afterwards, and then back to the sharp pain I had prior.  20 min after I had gotten home I passed out on the sidewalk in my back yard.  Ever since then I have had this problem.  Of course the chiropractor assured me he did nothing to cause me to pass out and other doctors think there must be a different underlying condition or they say I don't have it at all and then look stupid when they realize I wasn't referring to Pott’s disease -a presentation of extra pulmonary tuberculosis that affects the spine-.  Only one doctor was able to find out what I had using a tilt table test, he was also the only one who actually seemed he wanted to help me.  The cause of my POTS may never be known but surviving it is my main concern, especially with my baby on the way.

If you have POTS, similar experiences, or any questions feel free to chat with me.