Murphy’s Law and DVT


Clearly, I had no idea during my first pregnancy just how lucky I was. Barring the nausea that stopped at the end of the first trimester, it was barely noticeable. Reminders I was pregnant typically came only when I bent over to lace my shoes and had to hold my breath at the same time, with my hard belly lump leaving no room for lung expansion.

But this time, Murphy’s Law governs all. It seems that whatever unpleasant things may happen to pregnant women, will happen to me.  For months, my vertebrae have felt like a tenuously balanced stack of blocks about to tumble. Baby is pulling my skin more taut than I can bear, leaving me convinced he could bust out of it at any moment. His weight is too much for my frame — if I lie on my back I can’t breathe, and if I lie on either side my belly feels like it’s about to rip away from my torso. My ribs have been painfully pushed out of place, so I have to have them adjusted at fortnightly chiropractor visits. My belly and pelvic ligaments are so loose, it can be painful to lift my feet off the floor to walk, or to roll over in bed. If I stand too long, it feels like my internal organs are going to fall through my perineum.


And now I have DVT — Deep Vein Thrombosis. I’d woken up one morning with my right calf feeling like it’d had an almighty muscle cramp the previous night, and was now too bruised to move. Except, I’d had a cramp the previous night (in my other leg), so knew it’s not the kind of thing I can sleep through. And I hadn’t been woken this time. I limped around on it a couple of days, waiting for it to get better.

It didn’t. But it wasn’t red, or swollen. So I didn’t want to go to a GP, only for them to charge me so they they can say, “I can’t see anything wrong, you must have strained it somehow.” But to appease the concerns of other people, I went anyway.

I’d imagined I wouldn’t be in there long. Maybe half an hour, including waiting time. It doesn’t take a doctor long to say there’s nothing medically wrong, and retrieve their fee. So I had Timmy with me, and his bag of snacks and miscellaneous supplies, so we could go to playgroup straight after the GP consultation.

Half an hour turned into five hours, shared by the GP, sonographer, hospital, and various waiting rooms. An ultrasound scan of my leg had discovered several blood clots. DVT, they called it.

I only vaguely knew what that was. I didn’t know what it meant for me now, though. I only knew that for Timmy it meant he wasn’t going to get to playgroup today after all. He did really well to handle the boring-for-children medical environments for hours, and I was glad it all happened after his nap, and while I had his bag of supplies! Even if no toys were among them. (That was what playgroup is for, after all. And for me to chillax with a hot drink and a muffin.)

It turns out, for me DVT means injecting myself twice a day with medical bee stings, and regularly visiting the hospital for reassessment following this ‘pregnancy complication’. (Each visit comes with a least an hour or two in the waiting room after my stated ‘appointment time’.) I can handle the needles okay — they’re thin enough to not be much of a bother. But the blood-thinning drug that goes through them stings like tiny teeth. I’m told I’ll need this for at least six months.

Of course, being on blood-thinning/anticoagulant medication presents new challenges for my cesarean surgery, already booked in for August 22nd. A team of medical folk are still deciding how to handle that. I told them that the important thing to me is that the surgery still goes ahead.

As long as they let me have the cesarean, I’ll jab whatever barbs, teeth or spikes into myself that they want me to.


1 Comment

  • Mrs. W
    22 Jul 2013

    Happy to hear of a date for the c – not so happy to hear of the DVT. Pregnancy just doesn’t get easier….my second wasn’t much fun either.

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