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More than Morning Sickness: Kate Middleton's Pregnancy Announcement Draws Attention to Rare Pregnancy Condition Known as Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG)
Date:12/3/2012

LEESBURG, Va., Dec. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- The announcement that Kate Middleton is expecting her first child is bringing attention to a little-known pregnancy condition known as hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), a severe form of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy that can be debilitating because it causes serious dehydration and malnutrition. The condition is often misunderstood, even by healthcare professionals.

HG is generally marked by unrelenting nausea and vomiting that prevents women from eating or drinking and unable to keep anything down for months. Pregnant women who suffer from HG often lose weight during pregnancy and have difficulty carrying on daily activities. Those with the most severe symptoms are often hospitalized or placed on intravenous feeding.

"The HER Foundation sends their thoughts and prayers to Duchess Kate. We hope she knows she has tens of thousands of women around the world who understand what HG is and how it makes you feel physically and emotionally," said Ann Marie King, co-founder of the foundation, the world's largest grassroots network of HG survivors/supporters and leading site for HG information on the Internet. "Only those who have experienced HG can truly understand it. HG is so much more than morning sickness and its effects can be life changing."

It's estimated up to 2 percent of pregnant women in the U.S. are diagnosed with HG, the HER Foundation believes it is closer to 10 percent just by the pure volume of visits they receive on their site. Unfortunately, HG is not fully understood and a cause is not known. New theories and findings emerge every year, substantiating that it is a complex physiological disease likely caused by multiple factors.

Recent, conservative estimations suggest HG costs nearly $200 million annually just for inpatient hospitalization. Considering many women are treated outside the hospital to save costs, the actual cost is likely many times greater.

Dr. Marlena Fe
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SOURCE HER Foundation
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