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Symptoms, causes, treatment and prevention


For some women, pregnancy is a beautiful journey. In contrast, some people have severe morning sickness. Her morning sickness lessens or disappears completely within 12 weeks. But when morning sickness gets worse, doctors call it hyperemesis gravidarum.

The condition causes pregnant women to vomit four or more times a day, dehydrationPregnant women may also experience constant dizziness, lightheadedness, and weight loss.

This blog provides a comprehensive understanding of hyperemesis gravidarum, its symptoms, causes, complications, risk factors, and treatment.

What is hyperemesis gravidarum?

As mentioned earlier, hyperemesis gravidarum is an extreme form of morning sickness that causes severe symptoms. vomiting and nausea. Fewer than 3% of pregnant women experience this condition. Symptoms include dehydration, weight loss, frequent dizziness, and constant vomiting that causes lightheadedness. However, the symptoms become extreme and the pregnant woman becomes unable to hold food. In such cases, doctors recommend hospitalization.

This condition is temporary and should not be a cause for concern. There are many different ways to manage the same.

Morning sickness often goes away by the end of the month. first semester, but hyperemesis gravidarum generally lasts longer. Pregnant women can begin experiencing this condition any time during the 4 hour up to 6th week; may worsen between 9 o’clockth – 13th gestational week. During this period, women experience severe vomiting that interferes with their daily activities.However, in most women, symptoms improve by age 20th gestational week.

Doctors do not know the cause of hyperemesis gravidarum. However, they believe it is related to elevated hormone levels.

What is the difference between morning sickness and hyperemesis gravidarum?

It is important to note that morning sickness and hyperemesis gravidarum are different conditions with different symptoms and complications. However, distinguishing between the two can help in proper diagnosis.

A typical symptom of morning sickness is nausea, sometimes accompanied by vomiting. Nearly 90% of women experience it. Morning sickness usually goes away after the 12th week of pregnancy, but can last for 20 weeks or more. However, vomiting due to nausea does not lead to severe dehydration. Pregnant women may also experience fatigue, loss of appetite, and disruption of daily activities, which may not require hospitalization.

Hyperemesis gravidarum, on the other hand, only occurs in 0.5-2% of pregnancies. It starts with nausea and violent vomiting and can lead to severe dehydration, loss of appetite and severe weight loss. Also, patients with this condition cannot retain food or water. In extreme cases, patients may need to be hospitalized for malnutrition or dehydration.

What are the symptoms of hyperemesis gravidarum?

Hyperemesis gravidarum usually begins in the first trimester of pregnancy. Symptoms come and go. Therefore, hospitalization may be required to manage symptoms, while others may be managed at home. Some of the most common symptoms of hyperemesis gravidarum are:

  • constant nausea
  • loss of appetite
  • frequent vomiting
  • dehydration
  • Feeling lightheaded or dizzy
  • Weight loss of 5% or more of body weight due to nausea or vomiting

When should women see a doctor?

If a woman is pregnant and has severe nausea and vomiting, she should call her doctor. You should also contact your doctor if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • blood in vomit
  • light-headedness or dizziness
  • stomach ache
  • signs of dehydration
  • Inability to drink fluids for more than 12 hours
  • weight loss

What causes hyperemesis gravidarum?

In women, hyperemesis gravidarum occurs when serum levels of hormones such as human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and estrogen rise sharply. Excessive nausea and vomiting during pregnancy may also indicate multiple pregnancies (a woman carrying multiple babies) or a mole hydatidiformis (abnormal tissue growth that is not pregnancy).

What are the risk factors for hyperemesis gravidarum?

Risk factors for hyperemesis gravidarum include:

  • being obese
  • first pregnancy
  • Multiple pregnancies (twins or triplets)
  • hyperemesis gravidarum in previous pregnancies
  • Presence of trophoblastic disease (abnormal growth of cells in the uterus)

How is hyperemesis gravidarum treated?

Treatment of hyperemesis gravidarum depends on the severity of the woman’s symptoms. Possible treatments include:

  • preventive measures May contain acupuncture wristbands, vitamin B6 and ginger.
  • small frequent meals: Doctors can advise women to eat smaller, more frequent meals and dry foods such as crackers. You should also drink enough water to stay hydrated.
  • intravenous fluids: Pregnant women should maintain their fluid intake. Intravenous (IV) fluids may be needed if women continue to vomit during pregnancy. In severe cases, women require hospitalization and receive intravenous fluids. If the woman is able to take fluids by mouth, the doctor can stop the IV.
  • total parenteral nutrition: For the most severe cases of hyperemesis gravidarum, women may require a complex, balanced solution of nutrients, which the physician must administer intravenously during pregnancy. This is known as total parenteral nutrition (TPN).
  • medicine: Doctors prescribe medications to prevent nausea when persistent vomiting poses a risk to women and babies. If a woman cannot take her medication by mouth, her doctor can give her the medication through an intravenous drip or a suppository.

Can hyperemesis gravidarum be prevented?

Doctors do not know how to completely prevent hyperemesis gravidarum. To prevent nausea and vomiting from getting worse, women can try the following:

  • eating small meals frequently
  • Eat bland foods (soft, less spicy, less fiber)
  • Wait until nausea subsides before taking iron supplements
  • Use acupuncture wristbands and consume vitamin B6 or ginger as recommended by your doctor

What are the complications of hyperemesis gravidarum?

Pregnant women experience hyperemesis gravidarum, which can lead to complications for mother and child. Complications include:

  • Weight loss: This is a common complication. A pregnant woman can lose 5% of her total body weight.
  • Kidney problems: This condition can cause kidney problems as it stops functioning normally. As a result, urine output decreases.
  • Electrolyte imbalance: Expectant mothers may experience changes in electrolyte levels. These include potassium and sodium, electrolytes that the body needs. However, when the levels of these minerals become imbalanced, dizziness, weakness, and physical changes occur. blood pressure.
  • Weakness: Malnutrition, electrolyte imbalances, and the need for constant rest can lead to muscle weakness.
  • Hypersecretion of saliva: The body may produce too much saliva. Therefore, it may cause nausea if swallowed by pregnant women.


Symptoms of hyperemesis gravidarum disappear after delivery. Treating this condition during pregnancy can lower the risk of complications for women and babies. Women can deal with hyperemesis gravidarum by talking to their doctor.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. Is hyperemesis gravidarum fatal?

Hyperemesis gravidarum is not fatal because it is not life-threatening for the woman or the baby.

2. How is hyperemesis gravidarum diagnosed?

The doctor will discuss the woman’s symptoms, evaluate her medical history, and do a physical examination. In addition, doctors may ask for certain laboratory tests to make a diagnosis.

3. Does hyperemesis gravidarum go away on its own?

Hyperemesis gravidarum generally affects women in the first trimester of pregnancy. Symptoms, causes, treatment and prevention

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