Another major difference to note between morning sickness in pregnancy and hyperemesis gravidarum is in the case of the former. After 12 weeks, those with morning experience may experience a minor change or loss of appetite, which is normal. On the other hand, in the case of the latter, there is a complete loss of appetite. This leads to drastic weight loss or gain and dehydration, which is especially not good during pregnancy.
Symptoms of Hyperemesis Gravidarum
This condition usually starts in the first trimester of the pregnancy, coupled with the following warning symptoms. Given most of these look like normal pregnancy issues, they can be mistaken for morning sickness. The key is to pay attention to its severity.
- Severe vomiting induced by acute nausea
- Increased level of saliva secretion
- Excessive dizziness and fainting
- Yellowing of eyes and skin, a sign of oncoming jaundice
- Low blood pressure
- A constant state of confusion
Also note that if the frequency of vomits is more than four times a day, there is something definitely wrong. Excessive vomiting which leads to dizziness and dehydration should be looked into. Also, keep a tab on the weight. A weight loss of more than 5 kg is alarming and not a symptom of a healthy pregnancy.
To put it simply, the following are the causes behind the condition:
- Multiple pregnancies such as twins, triplets, etc.
- When the contents of the upper small intestine regurgitate back to the stomach
- Hydatidiform mole, i.e. a condition wherein the uterus witnesses an abnormal tissue growth inside it
- An abnormal peristalsis process, which means there is a defect in the way the stomach moves the contents around
- Increasing hormonal levels
- Rising blood thyroxine levels
- Abnormalities in the functioning of the liver
- Zinc and pyridoxine deficiency
- Helicobacter pylori infection which causes stomach ulcers
- Problems in the inner part of the ear
It has to be noted that there are no yet proven causes of hyperemesis gravidarum. However, the aforementioned list, even if not exhaustive, gives a fair idea of the causes of the condition.
Risk Factors and Complications
While we have mentioned the causes behind the condition, it is imperative to specifically know the risk factors too. The following are the women who are more at risk of getting hyperemesis gravidarum:
- Ones who are carrying multiple pregnancy to full term
- First-time mothers
- The ones who are suffering from a trophoblastic disease
- Overweight mothers
- The ones who have suffered from the condition during an earlier pregnancy
- The ones who have a genetic history of the condition
The aforementioned are especially at the risk of getting hyperemesis gravidarum and need to be monitored for the same.
Hyperemesis gravidarum should not be left on its own. It’s important it gets treated or there are multiple risks that the mother and the unborn child may face. Here are a few complications that arise due to the condition. Some of them may have lasting implications.
- Collapsed lung
- Liver disease
- Rupturing of the esophagus due to excessive vomiting
- Blood clot formation
- Kidney failure
This condition, if not treated, can be fatal for both the mother and child. It is essential to keep tabs and get it treated.