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Journey into the world of hyperemesis gravidarum...
07Oct 14

Treating pregnant women like any other patient

I've recently had the pleasure of speaking with Caroline De Bie from the Pregnancy & Medicine Initiative based in Brussels about developing a collaborative relationship between our organisations and cooperating together on projects to further education and research. It's an exciting time for developments in the world of Hyperemesis Gravidarum as we pick up the pace of improving services and awareness. Having featured as a guest blogger on their site I asked Caroline to feature on mine in order to raise awareness about their campaign.

Treating pregnant women like any other patient

By: Caroline De Bie, The Synergist Programs Director, Pregnancy & Medicine Initiative

Dark to Light campaign, Pregnancy & Medicine initiative

Most women, when pregnant, vow not to ingest (or be exposed to) anything that might harm the baby. Some of us even go as far as avoiding things deemed “safe” by our doctor, because “you never know.” And that is a choice we make and are comfortable with: we were given information, assessed the risk, and made a decision.

But what if you are in a situation where your own life or well-being could be compromised? What if there is no information on how the treatment could impact your baby? Or whether not getting the treatment could be harmful for you too?

Very often, women in that situation (and their doctors) have limited options: delay the treatment until the baby is born, get treatment and live with the risk or uncertainty (sometimes their entire life), or forego pregnancy altogether. But how does that decision come about and can there be another way? Today, the information available about medical treatment and its impact on pregnancy is limited, conflicting, and sometimes nonexistent. And future parents and their doctors are often left in the dark.

If you believe, like we do, that every pregnant woman has the right to make an informed decision, benefit from the progress of science, and have access to appropriate healthcare, I encourage you to support our campaign and ask others to do so too.

The only way to bring this issue to light is for parents and their doctors to speak out about their own experience, and make our voices heard. Join us in supporting pregnant women’s rights. Visit, answer our poll, share your story, and support others.

About the Pregnancy & Medicine Initiative 
Pregnancy & Medicine Initiative

The Pregnancy & Medicine Initiative was started because we believe there is a serious gap in medical knowledge that deprives pregnant women and future parents of some important rights. Pregnant women should have the right to appropriate medical care when they need it. They should be given the information they need to make the choices they are comfortable with. And they, like any other patient, should be able to benefit from the progress of science.

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More research is needed into cancer and the pregnant woman. Inc. chemotherapy or delayed treatment so women can make the right decision for themselves.
Felicity Clare Abdulkarim , 8th October 2014

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The Book

Hyperemesis Gravidarum - The Definitive Guide by Caitlin Dean

The Kids Book

Hoe to be an HG Hero by Caitlin Dean

About Me

I am mother of three beautiful children and wife to a fantastic and supportive husband. I am a nurse, a farmer and a trustee for Pregnancy Sickness Support. I love working hard and spending time with my kids.

About this blog

Information and support for pregnancy sickness and hyperemesis gravidarum. Views are my own and do not represent those of any other organisation. Information provided here should not be a substitute for medical advice. My aim is to raise awareness and encourage sufferers to know they are not alone.

Previous award nominations

MAD Blog Awards UK 2015