But I've been pregnant twice before and while I have experienced itchiness as my skin stretched, my skin has never itched this much and this extensively. I was itchy from scalp to ankles. The itch was not on my skin actually but just underneath it, like a scratchy throat. It drove me crazy. I would lie awake at night, scratching away like mad, even crying. I thought I was going to go insane.
I changed soaps, shampoo, lotions. I went naked as much as possible since anything that touched my skin triggered the itch. The A/C units are on 24/7 so I'm scared to get the electric bill. I cut my nails super short. I dusted myself with cooling powder. I took cold showers twice a day sometimes. I scratched so much, I'm bleeding all over.
Dr. Rebecca Singson, my OBG, thankfully, didn't dismiss my concerns. She said that there is a condition that affects pregnant women called intrahepatic obstetric cholestasis. Sometimes the liver becomes impaired by the pregnancy and instead of bile salts going from liver to the gut, it flows throughout the body instead. The bile salts build up and causes the severe itching. While this condition doesn't really affect the mother, other than driving her crazy from the itchiness, the condition affects the heart of the unborn baby. This can mean either a premature birth or, worst, a stillbirth.
Vince and I were terrified. Dr. Singson immediately ordered a battery of liver tests. Well, the tests came back normal. I'm fine. My liver is fine. But the itch remained. Clearly, something is not normal. Dr. Singson is still ruling out other possible causes (click here for a list of what can cause severely itchy pregnant skin) with more lab tests but so far, so good. We seem to be fine. So she told me to go on an all-natural diet—lots of fruit and veggies and homecooked meats, water only, no refined anything, no processed anything—since this is kindest on the liver. Vince told me to sleep, sleep, sleep since sleeping is when the body repairs itself. He insists, "Donya mode ka na! No more events unless advertiser. No more late nights working. Just rest!"
I've been praying so much because of this recent strange development. I don't know what to pray about since the lab tests say I'm fine! Finally, I just prayed that God heal my body from whatever it's suffering from that the lab tests can't find. I prayed especially for my little boy, whose heart beats so strongly inside me, that he be healthy and safe and to hang in there till he's good and ready to come out into the world. After a couple of weeks of praying and crying out to God, the itchiness has now dissipated. Thank You, God!
|My liver tests say I'm A-okay.|
We still don't know what happened there. Dr. Singson was never alarmed. She said I shouldn't worry because the lab tests say I'm fine, and even if the lab tests do say something is wrong, then there are ways to help me and the baby. Worrying will just add to my stress and stress is never good for me or the baby. So I pray a lot. I find that after I pray, my heart is assured and rested. Vince is still very worried, though. My heart is breaking for him. He says that until he holds his third son alive and well in his arms, he won't be released from the terror.
Please pray for me and Baby Chicken, dear mommies. I would really appreciate it if you cover us in prayer. I'll be 30 weeks pregnant this week. Just a little more waiting and then we'll finally hold my new baby in our arms and see him and hear him and cuddle him. I want nothing more than a healthy baby at the end of all this waiting! Thank you for your prayers!
P.S. If you're pregnant and have an unbearable itch, bring it up with your medical practitioner. Insist on lab tests if your concerns are dismissed. Better to be safe than sorry. Read about this mom's sad story: "When an itch during pregnancy is a sign your baby is at risk."
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