Congrats, New Mom! Oh, and You May Have HIV!
[Editor's Note: Do you remember the joy you felt upon delivering your firstborn? The pride? The wonder and awe? That hazy, new-mom feeling that couldn't be ruined by anything? Well, anything other than a positive HIV test... which is exactly what happened to Misplaced Texan. She's sharing her story to help educate others about what happened to her -- and how it could happen to you in the delivery room. It's an important post to read and share with other expectant moms. -Jenna]
Sadly, though, our happiness was short-lived when 10 hours later, my doctor came in to deliver us the most shocking news. An HIV test that I had agreed to have in the recovery room only a few hours earlier, had come back positive and was going to need a much more reliable test called the Western Blot to confirm its accuracy. My doctor tried to reassure us that the so-called "rapid" test that the hospital performs is not always accurate and has been known to provide false-positive results in pregnant women during their third trimester. Since the blood that was used for the test was taken when I was still pregnant, there was a significant chance that the test would be a false-positive, but we would not be sure until the results were in at least 48 hours later. Unfortunately for us, 48 hours turned into 5 days of the most torturous waiting that we've ever experienced. And, during this time, not only was I requested not to breastfeed my newborn, but as parents we faced the most terrifying decision of whether or not to administer a preventive medication to our 12-hour old daughter that would reduce her chances of contracting the disease from 30% to less than 2%.
The first few precious days of our baby girl's life had now been tarnished by an unbearably heavy cloud of guilt and worry.
Photo Credit: techfun.