A Tayside teacher is helping in the fight against a potentially life-threatening illness that affects thousands of pregnant women each year.
Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) hit the headlines when the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton battled the condition during her first two pregnancies and was hospitalised when expecting George in 2012.
With this week’s news that Kate is pregnant with the couple’s third child, music teacher Heather Miranda is hoping to raise awareness of a condition that affects up to 2% of pregnant women.
The Dundee resident suffered from HG in 2009 when pregnant with Joseph, now 7.
And it is due to the support she was given by Pregnancy Sickness Support (PSS) and Ninewells medic Dr Tony Nicoll that she felt able to bring three-year-old Theo into the world.
“I think any efforts to raise awareness are going in the right direction but there is a long, long way to go before people know what HG is about,” said the 36-year-old.
“Although Kate Middleton has raised awareness it’s been a mixed thing because she almost had this miraculous recovery.
“There’s another side to it.
“I received an email from someone the other day from a woman who had terminated her pregnancy because her doctor had only offered her one of the medicines that help the symptoms.”
Joseph raised more than £1,000 for PSS busking at Brechin Harley in the City, and £374 at his school Blackness Primary.
“I am so proud of Joseph – not only for his musical efforts, but much more so for the fact that he wants to raise money for charity,” said Heather.
Symptoms of the potentially life-threatening illness include malnutrition and dehydration due to unrelenting nausea and vomiting.
Constant vomiting often forces the sufferer to be admitted to hospital, which it did for Ms Miranda, and can be fatal without treatment.
Pregnancy Sickness Support provides information and support to those who suffer from extreme nausea and vomiting in pregnancy, and also for their carers.
Visit www.pregnancysicknesssupport.org.uk for information about HG.