Serena Williams Recalls “Excruciating” Pregnancy


| LAST UPDATE 04/08/2022

By Alyssa Williams
serena williams daughter labor
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Tennis star Serena Williams has opened up about the dangerous situation she was put in the day after she gave birth to daughter, Olympia. She has previously described her pregnancy with her now 4-year-old daughter as "relaxed" and "wonderful. However, the athlete recently revealed that one day after she gave birth to her daughter, she began to experience some life-threatening complications. Here's what went down.

In a new essay for Elle, 40-year-old Serena Williams shared that she gave birth to her child via an emergency C-section due to her baby's fluctuating heart rate. Following the surgery, she claims to have asked a nurse when she would start using a heparin drip to prevent blood clots - something the tennis player has had a life-threatening history of. But after the nurse dismissed her request, Williams says her situation became more critical. "No one was really listening to what I was saying… I felt it was important and kept pressing. All the while, I was in excruciating pain. I couldn't move at all - not my legs, not my back, nothing," she said.

serena williams olympia pregnancy
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Williams later began to cough, experiencing "racking, full-body ordeals" and "sharp pains" that shot to her C-section with every cough. This prompted a second surgery, after which the athlete claims to have woken up feeling very faint. "When I woke up from that surgery, in the hospital room with my parents and my in-laws, I felt like I was dying. They were trying to talk to me, and all I could think was, 'I'm dying, I'm dying. Oh my God.' I really thought I would faint," she shared. "I spoke to the nurse. I told her: 'I need to have a CAT scan of my lungs bilaterally, and then I need to be on my heparin drip.'" It was only after the nurse called a doctor, who agreed to the procedure, that Williams got the help she insisted that she needed.

Serena also noted that she would not have received the proper medical attention she required had she not been so persistent. "I fought hard, and I ended up getting the CAT scan. I'm so grateful to [the doctor]. Lo and behold, I had a blood clot in my lungs, and they needed to insert a filter into my veins to break up the clot before it reached my heart," said Williams. While we'll never truly know what went down behind closed doors, we're happy to hear Williams and her growing family are now happy and healthy!

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