Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A Sad Day.

Today was a sad day at the Bamberg Nurse Midwifery Service. I found out this morning that one of my patient's (whose name I won't post for privacy purposes) died Monday in Columbia after suffering from severe preeclampsia and other underlying health problems. Preeclampsia only occurs during pregnancy and has many speculated etiologies. It is a rapidly progressing condition that is characterized by high blood pressure, swelling, decreased kidney function, vision changes, etc. Unfortunately, you can also have very little symptoms and never know you are preeclamptic if you are not receiving regular prenatal care. Globally, preeclampsia and other hypertensive disorders of pregnancy are a leading cause of maternal and infant illness and death. By conservative estimates, these disorders are responsible for 76,000 maternal and 500,000 infant deaths each year. It is our job (as health care providers) to check for signs of preeclampsia at all prenatal appointments. The death of my patient and friend is just a reminder to myself and others that life is precious and that regular prenatal care is CRUCIAL. I am going to miss seeing my friend. It will be hard to see her 2 year old daughter in the office without her mother holding her in her arms. Each day with my patients is a gift. In memory of NJ. One day, I am confident, I will see you again.

1 comment:

Rachel said...

I am so sorry to hear this. I'm here if you need me. *hugs*