Amy Schumer has thrown up 980 times since she became pregnant, she told a New York Times reporter. She has hyperemesis gravidarum, and just a few years ago, Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, had the condition too.
Hyperemesis gravidarum is just what it sounds like, if you know the medical lingo: too much (hyper) vomiting (emesis) in pregnancy (gravidarum). It’s an extreme form of the pregnancy nausea that gets cutely called “morning sickness.” Some people don’t get nauseous at all in pregnancy, and on the flip side, some people get it so bad they can’t stop throwing up.
Normally, nausea in pregnancy starts early, around 5 weeks, and clears up by 12 weeks or so. You might throw up occasionally, but you can keep most of your food down. With hyperemesis, however, you have trouble keeping food down at all and can become severely dehydrated. Around the time other people’s nausea is letting up, yours is at its peak. Sometimes it continues throughout the whole pregnancy.
Hyperemesis can lead to weight loss, and can lead to other complications like damage to your liver and esophagus if it continues through the pregnancy. Treatment is aimed at helping you deal with the symptoms until the nausea resolves (or until you have the baby or terminate the pregnancy).
You may be prescribed IV fluids, electrolytes, and vitamins to replace what you’re not getting through food, and your doctor may also want to rule out other conditions that can cause similar symptoms.
Anti-nausea medications like Diclegis and Zofran may be an option. Fortunately, if this is your first pregnancy, you aren’t guaranteed to have hyperemesis the next time around. Recurrence rates vary from 13 to 81 percent. Good luck?