Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Hyperemesis and Residual Nausea, Part III: Now "Nausea-Prone"

I posted two days ago or so about having recently had 24-hour stomach flu, and I commented on the puzzling fact that I was still having brief intermittent waves of nausea, even though the stomach flu was five days in the past - and I wondered if this was yet another way that my body has been permanently altered by hyperemesis. (Or if I was pregnant.)

As I've posted several times before, my post-HG body is much more "nausea-prone" - my nausea took a long time to go away (it left mostly during the first week postpartum, but stayed around in twinges for about two years) and has reappeared frequently - when I'm hungry or wait too long to eat in the morning, when I'm really tired, when I eat something my stomach isn't in favor of, etc. Now, having had stomach flu for the first time ever since my first pregnancy, it seems that stomach flu too is going to appear under a different guise - that of being extremely slow to go away, nausea-wise, and prone to flair-ups afterward.

That being the case, I was very excited to receive Anna's comment:

"I'm WAY more nausea- prone post HG. All kinds of things make me nauseated that didn't before, and stomach bugs are worse than they were pre-HG in that they take me longer to feel better and fully recover. I also have to be sure to eat pretty soon after I get up, or I feel nauseated off and on the rest of the day! Lack of sleep = nausea, Extra stress= nausea, too much dairy = nausea, you get the idea. None of these issues were nausea inducing pre-pregnancy. So, yeah, I'm with you on this one!"

Interesting! Very interesting! I'm not alone! So.... Is this going to last for an entire lifetime? Will it gradually go away, or is being nausea-prone just a new way of life?

I know that post-pregnancy nausea is not a universal (or even a common) theme for HG mothers. I have spoken to at least one severe (read: life-threatening) HG mother whose nausea vanished on baby's birth and has never been back. My morning sickness, by comparison, was quite mild. So severity is apparently no predictor of this odd side-effect.

I do not think there is anything in the literature or in the educational airwaves on residual HG-nausea. I have asked several OBs about this, and each time received an odd look before the subject was quickly changed. So no help there!

Anyhow, I'd love to know. HG mothers: Have you ever experienced postpartum nausea? In what form? When, and under what circumstances? How long did it last? How severe was it? Or did your nausea vanish magically upon baby's birth, never to return? I'd love to hear any postpartum end-results statements.

Interesting stuff!



I saw my friend and chiropractor last night, who is about 28 weeks pregnant with the cutest little tummy you ever laid eyes on. :) She was talking about planning her upcoming homebirth (with my midwife, *sob*!), and what thought popped into my head? You know, after concluding "I can't do this again", etc. etc. etc. ? You guessed it: "Ah, shucks! I've got to have another one! I can make it work." (*Groan!!!*)


  1. There really is NO post-hg nausea info. out there. As you know, my doctors were baffled. I underwent every test imaginable to find the cause. They came up empty handed, of course. Then I was sent to the research hospital, where one of the leading gastroenterologists in the country (who also used to work in an HG clinic) said it was just a weird thing that occasionally happened. No, that's not my lack of properly explaining his diagnosis. That's really what he said. Actually, some of his exact words were, "Your body's just out of whack!" They really don't know why it happens, but it does happen...occasionally. I feel so lucky to be one of the few...haha. :)I'll post this blog post on my page and see if we get any hits. hmmm...

  2. Oh my - I'm glad I found this! I had HG during my pregnancy a year and a half ago and have definitely been more nausea prone since. A few times a week I get severe waves where I have to lay down. It's very bad when I get a cold or flu. I test for pregnancy a lot even though I'm on BC because of the nausea.

  3. Residual nausea is a real puzzle, isn't it? It's like HG trains the body to be more nausea-prone (in some women), and the body remembers after the pregnancy is long gone. Thanks for chiming in!

  4. I thought I was imagining my post-HG nausea. I had my baby in March and it comes and goes. It is definitely stress related and right now is being affected by my first PP AF. Bleh! I had HG for the entire 9 months. I'm interested to hear more.

  5. Kati, thanks for reading! I am glad to hear from other mamas to know that I too am not insane with this residual nausea! :)

  6. Hi Ladies,
    I had HG until 16 weeks when I lost the baby.. During the pregnancy I had taste perception changes where sour tasted like sulfur or rotten eggs. This lasted 3 months after the pregnancy and didnt go away until I got pregnant again.. Very strange. With each cycle in between the taste perception would get much worse..A response to hormones I guess. I would have a really hard time eating. I saw doctors about it and they had no clue.. the strange thing is as soon as I got pregnant again the taste perception went away..but I started HG again by week 6 and am wondering if those changes will come back. I am afraid if I go through a whole pregnancy with HG if I will share not only the taste perception changes but also continued nausea like you ladies. Yikes! How horrible!

  7. I had nausea the ENTIRE pregnancy. My baby is now ten weeks and I'm still nauseated. :(


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