Hi Rosa,

I hope you are doing well.  This is Barbara Hughey (and Tom) and I just wanted to write you about some recent developments. 

First, I want to confirm with you that we will be working with Casey as our doula.

Next, I'm 25 weeks pregnancy now and a few weeks ago I started developing varicose veins in the pelvic and groin area.  I looked up some information online and read that acupuncture is an effective and safe treatment to use during pregnancy.  I asked Casey for a recommendation for an English speaking acupuncturist that has experience with pregnancy and she suggested Dr. Royer at Jaseng Hospital, so I have been going there.  I've only had a couple of treatments and I think it will take a few before we see any big changes, if the treatment is successful.  The veins are protruding a lot and there is a swollen bulge on one side of my pelvis.  Some discomfort has also developed.

In the meantime I had an appointment with Dr. Sung a couple of days ago for a gestational diabetes screening and I asked her to have a look at one area in my pelvis that is particularly swollen.  She was concerned and referred me to another doctor, Dr. Choi at a nearby hospital.  Both Dr. Choi and Dr. Sung thought the swelling was from engorged veins, but Dr. Choi sent me to another doctor specializing in hernias just to be sure.  The third doctor, Dr. Hur, said that there was only a small, small chance it is a hernia and even if it is, it isn't a serious hernia.  I guess that's good news.  The only "treatment" they advocated was staying off my feet as much as possible, wearing compression stockings and close monitoring of the area to make sure it doesn't get worse.  The main reason I mention all of this is that while Dr. Sung and Dr. Choi were examining me, they both expressed doubt about a home delivery, because of the potential for excessive bleeding and the potential for bed rest if the condition worsens was brought up. 

I've done some research on my own and I believe I have "pelvic congestive syndrome."  From what I read, there is a very small chance of complication, but a natural home birth is not out of the question.  I am wondering what you think of this.  Should I come to your clinic so you can see the area?

Also, I read that witchhazel is good for varicose veins when applied topically, but I've read conflicting information regarding its safety during pregnancy.  Do you have an opinion about this?

The last question is about the government issued pregnancy subsidy card.  I'm in the process of getting one now, but I don't know how the card works and I haven't been able to find a lot of information.  Can I use this card with you?  If not, do you how else I can use it?

I'm sorry for such a long email and thanks for your help!

Barbara, Tom and baby