D.P. asks from Whitman, MA on January 09, 2009
I am 31 weeks pregnant with my 2nd child and was recently diagnosed with cholestasis. I actually had it early in pregancy which I was told very rarely/almost never is seen in the first trimester. Anyway, I was taking actigall and have been fine since October. The itchiness has returned and blood work confirmed that the cholestasis has returned. I am back on actigall but it has yet to kick in since I am still super itchy...so much so that I wake up every night at around 12/1am and won't get back to sleep for at least 1 to 2 hours. Have any of you had this and if so how did you cope with the itchiness? Also, did you give birth to healthy babies? I know that cholestasis can have serious effects on the baby. I am now going for weekly non stress tests and will have another ultrasound to check fetal growth/development in a couple of weeks.
Any thoughts comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
C.K. answers from Boston on January 10, 2009
Wow, I very rarley talk to anyone else who has had this.
I had this with my first son (now a healthy four year old) and it was unbarable. I gave birth in New Hampshire and had a Doc that was unaware of medicine to help treat it so, I dealt with that God aweful itch for a while.(they may not have had any treatment 4 years ago)
I was fortunate enough to not get it until 32 weeks, I did deliver early via c-section at 36 1/2 weeks.
I hate to say, nothing gave me awesome relief. I did find that drinking an absurd amount of water (3 gallons a day) helped, cool baths, and applying sarna over and over again in front of a fan or air conditioner (it was August) gave some releif.
I personally believe that all the extra water helped keep the baby safe, I also changed my diet and started drinking teas. I can't recall the type but, it was liver improving tea (easy enough to find).
In the end I was yellow and bloody from scratching myself raw, they tried to induce me but it was too early so I had a c-section. The baby was healthy and never had any problems and my symptoms went away a few days after birth (nubane shots relieved the itch immediatly after birth).
I would love to talk more if you have questions or need someone to cry to as I believe no one understands how painful itching can be until they've had this.
Hang in there.
K.M. answers from Boston on January 10, 2009
I just looked up what cholestasis is and realized the itching must really be bothering you! I have an Arbonne Herbal Diaper rash cream that I think may help you. I've heard from MANY people that it works especially for excessive itching.
Obviously, it's made for babies so I know it's safe for you to use.
Let me know if you'd like to try it and I'll drop it in the mail asap. You can get more information on the product at my website http://www.kellymcinnis.myarbonne.com
D.B. answers from Boston on January 10, 2009
I'm sure this is incredibly stressful and uncomfortable for you, plus you are worried about the baby! A great product for cleansing out toxins from the liver and other organs as well as stabilizing and strengthening the immune system is Reliv. There are a number of products available but I would think the basic nutrition including the fiber product would do the job for you. It's completely safe for pregnant women, babies, the elderly, and so on. My doctor approved it, and my friend's obstetrician approved it - no drugs or questionable things in it. People I know have had great results with a variety of itching issues including eczema and neuropathy which is a lot like what you have in your extremities though it can be caused by a variety of things. Reliv has been around 20 years and it's sold all over the world but made here in the US. It's available thru distributors. If you want me to connect you with some other cholestasis stories, let me know. GOod luck with everything!
N.S. answers from Boston on January 10, 2009
I have a close friends who went through this. You are lucky in some ways to have gotten the symptoms early & that your doctor was aware of the condition. From my understanding it is pretty rare. I don't think she found releif from anything until delivery. I can ask if she tried anything & let you know if she did.
T.Y. answers from Boston on January 15, 2009
Hi D. - first of all - congrats on your pregnancy!
I had cholestasis during my second pregnancy and I feel your pain or should I say itch '-) I used oatmeal baths and natural soothers like aloe or mint lotion. It had a cooling effect which helped. I also took Benadryl in the evening (children's) which helped the itch and helped me sleep. Of course, check with your obgyn before taking anything.
I did have a healthy baby and You're having precautionary non-stress tests to monitor any red flags that arrise so - try not to worry.
Good news is - the itch went away about 1 week after my son's birth so - it's something to look forward to - in addition to the birth of your child.