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Duchess Kate pregnancy: Morning sickness likely to be worse than first time

By Laura Elston

The Duchess of Cambridge could face worse sickness during her second pregnancy than her first, experts have said.

Kate is being treated by doctors at her Kensington Palace home for hyperemesis gravidarum, a rare condition which causes severe vomiting during pregnancy.

It is the same illness which saw Kate treated in hospital for three nights in December 2012 while pregnant with Prince George.

Experts said she could be in for a tough time, especially as she and William have the additional pressure of having the 14-month-old toddler to look after.

Nicola James, trustee of the charity Pregnancy Sickness Support, spent five months in bed suffering from the condition when she was pregnant with her second child.

The mother of two from Wales said: "It's highly likely that if you have had it before you will have it again and it's generally worse in subsequent pregnancies. It starts earlier and is usually more severe.

"But if it was treated well last time and you can get things in place, you might be all right. Some women even go as far as seeing their consultant and being put on medication as soon as they get a positive pregnancy test."

Hyperemesis gravidarum can lead to dehydration, weight loss and a build-up of toxins in the blood or urine called ketosis.

It affects 3.5 in every 1,000 pregnant women and can cause them to vomit blood. It can be treated with anti-sickness tablets and by giving fluids intravenously.

Mrs James added that alongside the physical symptoms, there was an added emotional weight of "guilt that you should be spending time with the oldest child when all you want to do is sleep".

She advised women like Kate, who have had hyperemesis gravidarum before, to put preparations in place as early as possible and get as much support as they can.

"You will need a lot of family support and don't feel guilty about not being able to look after the older one," she added.

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