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Meet the Paynes - 2016 March of Dimes Ambassador Family

Nov 17, 2016

Amy Payne 2

In 2015, Amy Payne and her husband Bill made the decision to expand their family, and they were ecstatic to share the news they would be expecting a baby girl on February 13, 2016. Their second child would be delivered at East Cooper Medical Center with Dr. Maggie Evans, Lowcountry OB/GYN. As many women know, the adventure of fertility, pregnancy and having a newborn can be a roller coaster ride with many ups and downs along the way. Amy’s experience was no different, and the couple was surprised and anxious when it became clear that their daughter, Hayes, would arrive seven weeks earlier than expected.

As her due date approached, Amy was visiting Dr. Evans weekly for routine appointments. The day after Christmas, she called to complain of swelling, nausea and elevated blood pressure. After some questionable lab work, Dr. Evans recommended that Amy be admitted to the hospital for 24 hour monitoring. As suspected, Amy was diagnosed with preeclampsia, and the decision was made to deliver Hayes within a few days. Hayes was born on January 1, 2016, earning the title of East Cooper Medical Center’s New Year’s Baby 2016.  She was a healthy 5 pounds and 1 ounce, but would require an extended stay at East Cooper’s Level II Neonatal Nursery to help monitor her breathing and growth. Amy described the delivery as quick and easy and felt the worst was behind them.

Amy Payne kids

The evening after delivering Hayes, Amy had a burning sensation in her chest, and her husband urged her to call the nurse. Almost immediately, Dr. Evans was by her side and ordered lab work to monitor her situation. Amy was diagnosed with HELLP syndrome (Hemolysis, Elevated Liver enzymes, Low Platelet count), and she was at risk for internal bleeding or stroke. Amy spent the next three days at MUSC, and remembers the time away from Hayes as absolute torture. Thankfully, her husband was able to stay at the hospital with Hayes through East Cooper’s Rest Easy Program, where a hospital room was provided to the family in order to stay close to Hayes during her time in the NICU. As soon as Amy was released from MUSC, she returned to East Cooper to stay the remaining days with Hayes, until she was able to go home 22 days later.

Amy’s situation, and the way that HELLP syndrome presented, are considered rare and atypical. In sharing her experience, she hopes to encourage more mothers to trust their instincts and to speak up when they feel something isn’t right. Amy knows her situation could have turned out differently for both her and Hayes if she hadn’t trusted her instincts and made that phone call after Christmas.

Amy and her family are sharing their story as this year’s 2016 Ambassador Family for the Charleston March of Dimes. Bill and Amy Payne reside in Mount Pleasant with Hayes, now 11 months, and their son William, 8 years old.    


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