Thursday, 28 March 2013

Postpartum cardiomyopathy

Meet Sabina and her family :).  The first time that I saw Sabina in clinic, she was a mess--hypoxic, heart murmur, crackles in both lungs, an enlarged liver, and 3+ lower extremity edema.  She was in full blown heart failure.

Her symptoms began shortly after the birth of her little one, who is now 9 months old.  She has what is called "postpartum cardiomyopathy." That is the fancy medical way of saying her heart became weak and began to fail after her pregnancy.  We don't really know what causes postpartum cardiomyopathy.  We treat it like other causes of heart failure.  Sometimes it gets worse.  Sometimes it gets better.

Sabina was already on a whole pharmacy of medicines.  I bumped up her lasix pretty significantly, and added a beta blocker and digoxin.  She came back every week for a check up.  I continued to tweak her medicines until her symptoms improved.  She is breathing easy and her legs are no longer swollen.  Praise God!  Now I can breathe easier, too.

For Sabina, we will just have to wait and see if her condition progresses or resolves.  I, for one, am praying for a miracle.  Will you pray for her, too?

"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me."
~ Psalm 51:10

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