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Sarah S.

Survivor

At 37 1/2 weeks pregnant, I had my 2nd son by C-Section. It was unplanned, but necessary as I had low fluid levels and baby was “not in distress, but not thriving”. I had my 1st via C-sec also, so I knew what to expect. Everything was uneventful, and we both went home healthy 2 days later. (Sepsis and Pregnancy & Childbirth)

Two days after being home, I developed a slight fever. I wasn’t very concerned and thought maybe I had overdone it that day and it was my body’s way of telling me to take it easy. In the morning, the fever was gone but I called my OB just to be safe. I was told that I probably had the flu.

That night, the fever came back full-force. I called my OB again, and they called back after several hours to say I should go to the ER if I was worried.
At the hospital I was diagnosed with a UTI, and given an antibiotic. (Sepsis and Urinary Tract Infections)

The next day, I felt much worse, and had an extremely high fever. That night I developed extremely severe abdominal pain, and ended up going to the ER by ambulance. I was told I had sepsis, probably from the UTI, and I would need to stay a few days. The next few days are kind of fuzzy, but I got to day 4 expecting to be sent home on IV antibiotics the next day. I had one more CT scan of my abdomen in preparation to be discharged.
Later that night, my doctor came in to the room and told me I was being transferred to the ICU at a hospital with a higher level of care. I had developed 4 very large cysts in my pelvis and lower abdomen.

I was transferred, and had 2 drains placed in order to drain the fluid from the cysts.

I spent a total of 18 days at the second hospital before being sent home with IV antibiotics. Several days after being home, I developed something called DRESS syndrome, which was a severe allergic reaction to the long-term antibiotics. I was admitted back to the ICU for several days for that, and then finally went home to stay, 33 days after my c-section.

I know that I’m extremely blessed to have made it through with no major long-term problems, aside from anxiety and slight chronic pain. I’m sharing my story to encourage people to advocate for themselves. There were several time early on that I felt like something wasn’t “right”, but didn’t speak up. I still wonder often what might have happened if I had just advocated a little a more.

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