Vomiting During Pregnancy

Is it morning sickness — or could you be really sick? And how do you get the puking to stop? Answers to those and more.
ByErika Rasmusson Janes
February 26, 2017
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What is vomiting during pregnancy?

If you found yourself here, you know what we’re talking about. Vomiting isn’t pleasant or pretty, but lots of pregnant women find themselves doing it — a lot.

What might be causing my vomiting during pregnancy?

Vomiting — no surprise — is pretty darn common during pregnancy. Early on in your pregnancy, it’s usually caused by high levels of the hormone HCG, which causes  morning sickness and the more severe  hyperemesis gravidarum (excessive vomiting). Later in pregnancy,  nausea and vomiting can be caused by severe  heartburn or acid reflux. Early labor, preeclampsiaHELLP (hemolysis elevated liver enzymes and low platelet count) syndrome or fatty liver of pregnancy can all cause vomiting too, says Jennifer Keller, MD, assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at The George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences.

And there’s also the chance you could have the stomach flu or food poisoning, at pretty much any time during pregnancy.

When should I go to the doctor with my vomiting during pregnancy?

Contact your doctor if you’re worried about dehydration, if you’re vomiting more than a few times per day, if you can’t work or keep fluids down, or if your symptoms don’t get better within 24 hours.

How do I treat my vomiting during pregnancy?

There are many options for treating this condition, which can cause dehydration,  weight loss and malnutrition. If you’re severely dehydrated, you might need to be given IV fluids, and you might be given pregnancy-safe antinausea medicine. Your doctor can help.

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