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Emma’s story

After hearing the news of her first pregnancy, Emma sadly underwent an operation for an ectopic pregnancy. This was just the beginning of Emma's journey. Here's Emma's story.
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My story begins with me and my husband finding out we were pregnant a week before our 2nd wedding anniversary, we were shocked but overjoyed to learn that we were 5 weeks pregnant, however just a week later 2 days after our anniversary I awoke with pains and bleeding, I was taken to the walk in centre by my sister around 5pm and they said it may just be pains or the start of a miscarriage and there was nothing they could do so I was sent home.

My husband arrived home from work around that evening took one look at me and took me to the A&E department, I arrived at around 10pm and I was there until 2am in the morning, they refused me a scan during this time even though myself and my husband insisted on one and instead just took blood tests and I was sent home with painkillers and was told it was implantation bleeding and it would settle down, they also argued how far gone I was into my pregnancy which was confirmed the next day that I was indeed correct as my HCG levels were too high for me to be only a week gone. I was then called by a concerned sonographer from maternity ward at 8-30am the next morning after they read my notes from the early hours of me being in A&E. When I told them I was in more pain and that the paracetamol and codeine had not even touched the pain they told me to come straight in which I did.

After then scanning me finally it was confirmed that it was indeed an ectopic pregnancy and was told that they would need to perform emergency surgery in order to remove the mass as it was quite large. I was then taken down to theatre after they explained that they would try to do key hole surgery but in some cases it may result in a full laparotomy if the key hole was unsuccessful. After waking up from the surgery I was told by the surgical team that my ectopic pregnancy had actually ruptured which can be fatal and I had been bleeding internally for a while so I had needed a full laparotomy and lost a fallopian tube during the surgery process. I was then released from hospital two days later and came home only to be in really bad pain and the painkillers again were doing nothing for me, my stomach had started to weep and there was a purple bruise that was getting bigger on my stomach so my husband took me to the walk in centre where I was seen by a Dr only to be told it was a mild infection and gave me antibiotics.

On the Thursday evening the following day around 11-30pm my wound suddenly started oozing brown liquid and the smell was horrific, I also had the black lump on my stomach which had been there when they had released me which we questioned and was told it was perfectly normal bruising. My husband called 999 and I was taken by ambulance back to hospital around midnight as my blood pressure was very low and I was losing consciousness, there was also a red line on my stomach which they marked off with a pen that had started to rise quite rapidly and I was in terrible pain, they cleaned me up but it was still oozing and I was then put onto a ward with three other women around 5am and told to get some sleep and a consultant would see me sometime in the morning.

Around 8:30am that morning a consultant came and took one look at the wound (the purple bruise was now protruding from my stomach and was green) and confirmed they needed to start me on antibiotics for Septicemia there was then numerous blood tests taken from me and 45 minutes later I was then taken to a side ward and was told by the consultant I was being transferred to Addenbrookes hospital and the ambulance was on it’s way. I was really scared at this point as I did not know what was really happening to me. I arrived at Addenbrookes forty minutes later and was taken straight to the resuscitation area where more blood was taken and also I was given a CT scan to check my organs weren’t failing.

My temperature had hit nearly 40 and there was a lot of Dr’s and nurses in and out asking questions. I was then told that there was a chance that it could be Necrotising fasciitis (a rare flesh eating bug) and was also told it can be life threatening and I needed surgery straight away. I was then taken down to theatre and was in surgery for around 6 hours. During this time my family were told by the surgeons that they were treating me for Necrotising fasciitis and were doing all they could but I was a very sick. I came round from the surgery and woke up in intensive care where I was monitored by staff through the night closely. I was told they had to remove skin and tissue from my stomach the size of 22cm by 15cm because the infection spreads so quickly and kills the tissue and the only way to stop it is to cut it out. Because further operations were needed, the wound was left open with a vacuum seal on it to prevent further infection.

I was very lucky and it was caught just in time another 6 hours and I was told I wouldn’t be here today. I was given a blood transfusion before they could do another operation as I had lost a lot of blood during the first op. Three days after the first op I was then opened up again so they could remove more dead tissue that the infection had killed. Four days after this I was put under again for one final check and for the surgeons to close me up. I spent a total of 14 days in hospital and I cannot thank them enough as they saved my life and I am very thankful to be here today because of them.

I am now making a good recovery but the emotional side will never leave me or my husband and we continue to grieve for the loss of what would have been our first child.

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