Week 12 – June 15, 2010
Your Body: You can barely brush your teeth without gagging so the mere thought of visiting the dentist may make you retch. Still, healthy teeth and gums are especially important during pregnancy as poor dental care can lead to a variety of problems such as pregnancy-related gingivitis and periodontal disease, neither of which sound like any fun at all. Plus, poor dental health during pregnancy has been associated with premature and low-birth-weight babies. Book an appointment, but be sure to let your dentist know you're expecting, so you can avoid dental X-rays. If you notice strange lumps on your gums, don't worry. It's just another perk of being preggo. Many women develop harmless, non-cancerous oral tumors when pregnant. And just when you were feeling really sexy ... Even more good news this week: the uterus makes a move upward during week 12 of pregnancy. This relieves some of the pressure on the bladder that has caused those frequent trips to the bathroom for the first 11 weeks. Throughout the second trimester, the bladder will be relatively safe from uterine pressure but the pressure will return in the third trimester as the uterus grows larger than ever. However, you may begin to feel heartburn (also called acid indigestion), a burning sensation that often extends from the bottom of your breastbone to your lower throat. Many women get heartburn for the first time during pregnancy, and those who've previously had bouts of heartburn may find that it gets worse. The discomfort may range from mildly annoying to intense and distracting. Though you may not have gained much weight during these first few weeks, you likely have the beginnings of a baby bump! Finally having something to show for your weeks of nausea may be reassuring, though it may also mean it's time to make some important choices, such as when to tell your boss about your upcoming due date. Most pregnancy experts suggest that you wait until after your first trimester to spill the good news to your employer. Most complications, including miscarriages, happen in the first trimester, making it wise to break the news later. Besides drinking plenty of water, eating light snacks throughout the day, going to the restroom often, and wearing breathable clothing, keep your posture in check as sitting in the same position for an extended amount of time can make the blood pool in the lower parts of the body, causing lightheadedness. So put your feet up whenever possible to restore blood circulation and to avoid fainting.
Your Baby: Baby's face is looking more human as his eyes have moved to the front of his head and his ears are in place. This is kind of gross, albeit fascinating, so feel free to skip ahead: Your baby's intestines are well under way, but they aren't all where you'd expect them to be. Instead of all being locked away in the body cavity, some are dangling on the outside, in the umbilical cord. Ewwww. While the genitals are forming during the 12th week, most often they are not visible on ultrasound until the 16th week of pregnancy. Ultrasounds are not required for a healthy pregnancy, but many doctors order them or perform them in office to gauge fetal growth and give expecting parents a chance to see baby for the first time. From crown to rump, your baby-to-be is just over 2 inches long (about the size of a lime) and weighs half an ounce.
"One more week of this and then no more morning sickness, ever," said Cameron as she slowly stood up from the bed after getting dressed that morning.
"You were feeling fine yesterday, and the day before that. Do you have an idea of what might have set you off today?" asked Chase as he pulled his wife into a soothing hug.
"Maybe it had to do with me getting my teeth cleaned yesterday. Maybe I accidentally swallowed a bit of the tooth polisher they used."
"That's possible. Why do they always make that stuff taste nasty?"
"I have no idea. Oh well."
"Do you feel any better now?" he asked.
"Yeah," she said as she slowly pulled away from Chase to finish getting ready. "Hopefully today will be a quiet day."
"I hope so too. Just do me a favor though."
"Just take it easy today. I don't want you to feel any more worse than you did earlier," he told her as he cupped her face in his hands.
"Don't worry, I'll be fine. The last thing I want for you to do is to stand over me like a chicken hawk every time I stand up."
"All right, you win. I won't watch your every move if you promise to take it easy."
"Deal. Now, let's get to work."
Throughout the morning shift and well into the afternoon, Cameron's condition stayed the same. It was around mid-afternoon that she took notice of just how sick she was. While she was sitting in the Diagnostics office waiting for Chase and Foreman to return, she began to feel a bit lightheaded. Before she could even begin to put her feet up did she feel nauseous. Standing up quickly to head to the nearest trashcan, she lost whatever she had eaten for lunch. When she was done she tried to stand back up, but was hit with a wall of dizziness and before she could support herself, blackness overcame her.
"Now all we have to do is wait for the - where's Cameron?" asked Foreman.
"She said she would be here when," said Chase, but stopped when he saw her on the floor. "Oh God, Allison!" he cried rushing over and gently rolled her into his arms.
"Careful, she might have hit her head," mentioned Foreman as he felt for a pulse. "Her pulse is really weak, and she looks flushed." Looking around, he noticed the trashcan. "This could probably explain it. She's got the flu."
"What the heck is going on in here?" demanded House as he came sauntering in as he normally did.
"Cameron's collapsed. She isn't coming to," exclaimed Foreman. "Do you still have those smelling salts here?"
"Yeah, hold on," said House as he quickly limped over to his desk to pull out a small vial. Walking back in, he quickly unscrewed the lid. "Better let me do it," he told them as he waved the vial in front of Cameron's nose. After a few seconds, Cameron began to stir but she had a hard time opening her eyes.
"Allison," whispered Chase as he gently stroked his hand on the side of her face. "Allison, open your eyes honey." After some coaxing she finally did manage to wake up, but had a hard time trying to focus as her vision was a tad blurry. After a moment she began to surrender to unconsciousness once again, but was shaken awake by Chase. Again, she lost the battle to stay awake. "Her breathing is really shallow," he said to both Foreman and House. "We need to get her out of here."
"Gurney's here and so are Wilson and Cuddy," said Foreman. Moving back toward Chase, he helped him gather Cameron into his arms to take her outside. Once she was settled she was immediately hooked up to oxygen and a pulse ox. Moving quickly, she was rushed down to the ER for assessment. When Foreman swooped in to examine her, Cuddy pulled Chase aside.
"What happened?" she asked him.
"I have no idea. Foreman and I went to check on a patient, and when we got back we found Allison passed out on the floor. Her pulse was low and her breathing shallow."
"Do you have any idea what might have caused it?"
"She wasn't feeling well this morning, but she insisted on coming to work." Looking back over to where his wife laid, he began to feel a sense of guilt. "I should have made her stay home."
"Hey, don't go blaming yourself over this. It was just an accident," she told him in her stern but caring voice. "From what you've told me, it sounds as though she has the flu, but we'll have to wait and see what Foreman says." A few moments later, he came over to tell Chase what was wrong with Cameron.
"Well, from what her symptoms have shown us, it looks like a case of the flu. Normally I would send a patient home, but not in this case."
"Are you sure?" asked Chase.
"Sorry buddy. Her pulse and breathing are still a bit shallow, and I'm a bit worried she's dehydrated. The best thing for her is to stay the night and into tomorrow as well. It's all just for precautionary measures."
"Also, I want to take a blood sample just to be sure we're dealing with the flu here."
"Sure, go ahead. Just give me the paperwork to sign." After signing the forms, Cameron was moved back upstairs.
After being moved to a private room, Cameron had been turned onto her left side for fear that she might throw up again. She was also placed on a rehydrate solution that would be made up when she came to. After what had been a few hours, she did begin to stir, lightly moaning to get Chase's attention.
"Hey," he whispered as he gently leaned forward. "You're all right now. You're safe," he told her once she was more awake and alert.
"What happened?" she asked rather weakly.
"You were sick earlier, and you collapsed in Diagnostics," he explained to her as he gently rubbed her shoulder and back. "Was it a repeat from this morning?"
"I think so," she said as she laced her fingers through his from the hand he had been holding ever since she had been brought up from the ER. "I had been sitting straight for a while before I began to feel lightheaded. But before I could elevate my feet, I had to go be sick," she told him without making eye contact with him. "The last thing I remember is feeling really dizzy, and then nothing."
"That would explain the low pulse you had when Foreman and I found you," he said to her. That was when he noticed that she was crying. "Sweetie, what's wrong?"
"I didn't take care of myself when I told you this morning that I would," she cried out. She then felt Chase move his hand from her shoulder to her face, to soothe her as best he could.
"Honey, it wasn't your fault. You took care of yourself as best as you could today before all of this happened," he gently whispered to her. "It's all over now. Here, in order for you to get better quicker, you have to drink this," he told her as he reached behind him to grab a cup full of rehydrate solution.
"I don't want anything right now. I just want to sleep," she complained as she tried to roll onto her other side.
"Oh no you don't," he said to her in a stern voice. "It's either you drink this or you go on an IV, so which will it be?"
"I'd rather take this than that any day," she groaned as she gently sat up, hoping that she would not aggravate her stomach any further than she would like.
"Just sip it slowly," coached Chase as he held the cup for her, as she was still a bit shaky. After a minute or so she was all done. "See, that wasn't so hard now, was it?" he asked when she was done. "Do you want me to come around so you can be held?"
"Please," said a now sleepy Cameron. After Chase was settled next to her, he pulled he into his arms, wrapping his arms around her. "Oh God, the baby!"
"Allison, the baby's all right."
"How do you know that? Has Dr. Stevens been in to check on me? What if when I collapsed I hurt the baby? What if," asked Cameron but was cut off by Chase kissing her sweetly and gently, hoping to calm her down.
"Honey, listen to me. The baby is all right. If something had happened, it would have been found out about hours ago. I did page Dr. Stevens to check on you later tonight when it's a bit more quiet, and he'll be in here in a little while to put all of those fears aside," he explained to her. "I know you're scared about it, but there's nothing to worry about. Okay?" he asked as he gently kissed her forehead.
"For now. I know we had our first ultrasound a few weeks ago, but I just want to be sure the baby's okay."
"I know, and so do I. But worrying about it all the time won't help matters."
"I just can't stop worrying though."
"Shh. Just try to rest a little bit more for me, okay?" With no reply and a quick glance at his sleeping wife, Chase fell asleep as well. About an hour later, Chase was awoken to Foreman shaking him.
"Test results came back. She might want to hear this too."
"Allison, time to wake up," he said as he gently kissed her. After a moment, she was awake.
"Welcome back Cameron. Earlier, I took the liberty in doing a blood test to see what was wrong and I discovered that your hormone levels are up."
"She's pregnant?" asked House as he walked in the door with Cuddy and Wilson in tow.
"Yes, I'm pregnant," said Cameron. "And we have known about it for a while now."
"Why didn't you say anything to us sooner?" asked Wilson who stood there shocked just like the others.
"Because we wanted to wait until after the first trimester before we told anyone, including you guys," explained Chase as he pulled Cameron in closer to him, as a way to protect her.
"Cuddy, please don't be mad at us for not telling you sooner," said Cameron.
"I'm not mad," said Cuddy. "In fact, I'm glad you two waited until later because of what happened last time."
"You're sure about that?" asked Chase.
"Absolutely," she told them as she made her way over to Cameron to giver her a hug. "Before we know it, this little one will be here crying out for some attention," she said as she lightly touch Cameron's still small baby bump.
"But before that is even possible, her doctor has to make sure everything is all right," announced Dr. Stevens as he made his way into the room with the ultrasound machine. "Hi Allison. How are you doing, considering the circumstances?"
"I'll feel better once I know that my baby is all right."
"Okay then, let's take a look here then. First ultrasound is normally full of happiness, but it'll be different this time around," explained Stevens as he prepped Cameron for the Doppler. "Okay, there's you're baby," he said as he positioned the probe so that Chase and Cameron could get a good first look at their unborn child.
"Is the… is the baby all right doctor?" asked Cameron suddenly feeling anxious.
"The baby's just fine. I don't see any signs of trouble or any abnormalities whatsoever." A heavy sigh of relief was let out throughout the room, but mainly from the parents, especially from Cameron who leaned heavily onto Chase with a look of contentment. "Wow, no more tough tension in this room," exclaimed Stevens with a laugh, getting a laugh in return from the others in the room as well. After a while, he printed out a few pictures for Chase and Cameron to take home with them. "Dr. Foreman, I don't believe that it's necessary to keep our patient here overnight, do you?"
"No sir. But I wanted to just in case if her condition didn't improve."
"Well, her pulse is back to normal and so is her oxygen level. I think we could let Dr. Chase take his wife home."
"Thank-you doctor," smiled Chase as he helped Cameron to sit up.
"But only if she takes tomorrow off, and promises to take it easy for the next couple of days."
"I'll do it, I swear."
"She'll get her rest, I'll make sure of it," agreed Chase.
"Okay then, that's all folks," said Stevens as he ushered House, Cuddy, Wilson, and Foreman out of the room to give Cameron some privacy to change. "I'd like to see you two again for your next appointment in about a month, just to see how this baby is growing," said Stevens once the others had left.
"Sure. Call us at home in a few days to set it up," said Cameron when she was situated on the side of the bed.
"Will do. Congratulations again you two," said Stevens as he shook both of their hands before taking the ultrasound machine out of the room with him.
After the couple had gotten home late that night from the hospital, both were in bed looking at their ultrasound photo together. Almost on instinct, Chase reached across and rubbed his hand over Cameron's small baby bump to say goodnight to their baby.
A/N: I was having "one of those weeks" this past week, which explains the tardiness of this chapter. On the other hand, it was well worth the wait for it though. Enjoy and R/R!