25 April 2016
St Michael’s Hospital launches new hyperemesis unit for patients
Expecting mothers who suffer extreme vomiting during their
pregnancy can now receive quick and efficient treatment from a new
unit called the opening at St Michael's Hospital.
Between 70-80 per cent of women are likely to experience some
sickness or nausea during their pregnancy, commonly known as
morning sickness. However, one per cent of women become affected by
a condition known as "hyperemesis gravidarum" characterised by
extreme sickness and nausea, which often requires hospital
St Michael's new unit, called the gynaecology treatment lounge,
is specially designed to treat patients with hyperemesis, without
the need for a long stay in hospital. The unit is fitted with two
reclining treatment chairs, in a room located in the gynaecology
outpatients; away from the busy ward environment.
From 20 April, women who are six to 20 weeks pregnant with
hyperemesis, and planning to have their babies at St Michael's
Hospital, can come to the unit for treatment. The nurse led service
will be available Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 10am - 4pm.
Sally Stacey, senior staff nurse, said: "We are very fortunate
to be opening this unit to patients with hyperemesis. For those who
suffer with the condition, this time can be very unpleasant which
is why we aim to reduce any added stress with a comfortable
environment, away from the busy ward, for treatment.
"Women can be referred to the service via a GP, midwife, early
pregnancy or through an A&E admission. When patients have come
to the unit once, they can then self-refer, which allows open
access to the unit if ongoing treatment is required."
In the last year St Michael's admitted 145 patients to its
gynaecological ward which accounted for 213 bed days, with an
average stay of one and half days.
Jennifer Anstey, gynaecology matron, said: "Patients coming to
the unit can be treated in a short period of time with rapid
rehydration, medication and advice to take home about living with
hyperemesis. Going home on the same day is particularly beneficial
to patients who work or have other children and family at home.
"To ensure patients are not alone during treatment, the room can
accommodate one visitor per patient. The room also has a radio,
donated by a previous patient of the Trust and televisions funded
by Above & Beyond, the local charity that raises funds for St
Michael's and the other University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation
"The hyperemesis unit is the result of a huge team effort here
at St Michael's. We are very excited to open this new facility to
patients and are confident this will improve our patient
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