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Obstetric Cholestasis

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Who's got it?

I have been really itchy and when i say itchy i mean itchy without a rash since about 15 weeks. They did a bile acid test back in May and it was a 2. They just did another one on Friday and i was a 1. I am really confused about this cause My Gallbladder has been really hurting too (the pain comes and goes)
But my hands and feet itch to the point i am digging the skin off and making it bleed.

I had this exact condition with my last pregnancy and i figured new dr and all would take caution about this and monitor me and what not but NOPE...Seems like they are totally ignoring all my symptoms and my worst fear will be delivering a stillborn.

When i was 37 weeks with my last pregnancy I remember my appt was on a Wednesday afternoon and that's when the midwife sent me to the labs to have blood work drawn. Of course I had eaten and everytime i get the bile acid test done now they tell me i am supposed to be fasting. Could that be the reason my numbers are popping so low? Cause i am fasting?

I just wish this itching would stop and the only way for it to stop is delivery of the baby and anytime after 37 weeks increases a chance of a stillbirth. I wish i could get my dr to listen to me...I complain at every appt that my hands and feet still itch bad and he just brushes it off like its nothing.
post #2 of 10
Soooo sorry you are dealing with this! I don't have it and never have, but I did have a horrid case of PUPPPS and it was the most miserable thing EVER. I can really sympathize. I don't have much experience with it but wanted to offer some

I would think that any liver support you can do would be helpful. I personally would try taking Dandylion or some kind of liver-nourishing herbs. WishGarden herbs has a liver support blend that I'm taking on my midwife's recommendation, maybe try that?

I hope you get your concerns addressed soon. I think you should tell your HCP exactly what you told us...that you don't feel like anyone is taking you seriously and it's really concerning you.

Keep us updated.
post #3 of 10
I had suspected cholestasis at the end of my last pregnancy, and Dandelion Root tincture, and milk thistle tincture both helped my itching tremendously. I took them both 3 times per day. I also began seeing an acupuncturist, which I think helped as well. But the dandelion root and milk thistle both made a noticeable difference in my itch levels.

When I was initially tested, my liver function test came back elevated, but my serum bile acid test was normal. So if I did have cholestasis, it wasn't full blown. But it seems as though the two tinctures coupled with acupuncture and a very low fat, low sugar diet, at least helped my liver along, whatever was happening with it. You might try those tinctures to at least help offer your liver some support.

And good luck! I remember being so terrified
post #4 of 10
I had it in my pregnancy. I didn't get it (or at least not symptoms) until 39 weeks, luckily, and they let me go to 40 weeks before we induced (and man, I tried everything to get into labor on my own).

I was on Actigall, which got rid of my sypmtoms. I wanted to scratch my feet off my legs.

It's no fun, and I totally feel for you. I only had to deal with it for a few days.
post #5 of 10
When I was initially tested, my liver function test came back elevated, but my serum bile acid test was normal. So if I did have cholestasis, it wasn't full blown.
This was what happened to me too. Though I had a scary few weeks waiting for the bile acid test to come back. The really low fat diet and dandelion and milk thistle tea might have helped - the liver function went back to normal eventually as well. I ended up going into labor naturally at 40 weeks 4 days, and the baby is a perfectly happy 17 month old now.

Of course, now that I'm pregnant again, I'm worried that it'll start up again!
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Ya this has been going on since about 15-20 weeks or so...anywheres in between those weeks... I can't really remember all i know is it started off with the gallbladder pain around my 15th week...and then the itching started around my 20th week...In May I had my bile acid tested and it was a 2. I had them retest it again last Friday( a week ago) and it was a 1. I am still wanting to cut my hands a feet off and transplant new ones cause i am sick of the itching. My Dr. Prescribed me Vistaril. I have taken 4 doses of it since i have had the medicine and there's still no change. I am still itching. Itching...Itching...Really, i cannot take this itching anymore and i am puzzled as to why its coming back normal....My sanity level is going to over boil and i am going to go crazy.
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
So now in addition to the Vistaral he wants me to take Claritin. I am getting sick of him not listening to me. I keep having these NIGHTMARES that something terible is happening. I have an ultrasound scheduled for the 13th. Its to check for growth. I have also been losing weight. When i got pregnant i didn't start gaining anything until i was 20 weeks or so. I have gained 4lbs so far. I was at 8lbs but i lost 4 of those 8lbs so now i am back down to 4lbs gained total in this pregnancy. I am measuring 3-4 weeks ahead. So he's concerned about that. I am not..I am concerned about the Cholestasis which keeps coming back normal...they have only tested me 2 times. I want them to test me again but they won't.....This is making me ill. I just have this ill stomach feeling that something is not right.
post #8 of 10
DDCC again

If it's cholestasis then as far as I know claritin isn't going to do anything. Benadryl would be more helpful in that it would at least help you sleep. But antihistamines aren't going to do anything for your itching, because it's not a histamine reaction. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

Also, while you have time, do some research of vitamin K absorption and Cholestasis. I was already planning to do the vit k shot, but even if I hadn't been, I think I would have changed my mind. but... I didn't research it very deeply (since I was already planning to do the shot), so it might be worth a look.

ETA: do you know if there is any reason he doesn't want to try Actigall? Or does he just not know anything about Cholestasis? I mean, I'm sure Actigall has some potential side effects (though I would have done almost anything to relieve the itching), but to me it was worth it.
post #9 of 10
I do not have cholestasis, but I do have a monster case of PUPPP and I just want to offer you and my sympathy. I know the itching is miserable; I absolutely KNOW!

I also second that if your HCP doesn't listen to you, try to find someone who WILL! Cholestasis is very serious.

I think one thing cholestasis and PUPPP do have in common though is that they are liver-related. I have been taking dandelion root, milk thistle, and stinging nettle supplements for the last several days and I have noticed real improvement--I think they will help you, too. I am also taking benadryl to help me sleep, though as a PP said, I don't think cholestasis has anything to do with a histamine reaction as PUPPP does, so that might not be helpful for you.

I am so sorry you are suffering and wish you lots of luck in finding an HCP who will listen to you and take your concerns seriously.
post #10 of 10
I'm not in your DDC - am currently 31 weeks. I was searching for Cholestasis and found your post. I was recently diagnosed with it.... my MW missed it - it was a google self-diagnosis and I requested the labs. So far as I can tell knowledge seems to be lacking in the medical profession about this one. We are switching to a practice that handles high risk pregnancies (I'm also expecting twins) on the advice of my practice and a few doctors in our family. From what I've read so far it can take weeks for lab results to show numbers that would indicate cholestastis though if you've had symptoms for awhile I'd think you'd see something by now. Not sure about the fasting - I was never told to fast for any of the dozen or so blood tests I had done in the past couple weeks. I've also heard that it affects appetite(after being insanely hungry for most of the 2nd tri I now have no appetite) and thanti-histamines wont work for the itching; taking Actigall and perhaps Vitamin K is the best thing you can do for your comfort and your baby's health. There is a website support group called itchymoms or something like that - it has links to several research studies and articles. Maybe bring some of those to your MD or try to get a consult elsewhere. Good luck - hope all turns out okay.
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