I first developed intense itching on my hands and feet five days after testing positive for COVID. I contacted my midwife and she sent in orders for blood work, which came back elevated (20.7) for bile acids, and in a normal range for liver enzymes. I was diagnosed with this rare condition of cholestasis in my 30th week of pregnancy. Searching the internet, I found the ICP Care website which was a wealth of information and helped educate me on this new and scary diagnosis. I struggled with the thought of an induction, as I had planned for an all natural and intervention free first birth experience. Even though my bile acids and liver enzymes stayed low the remaining portion of my pregnancy, I chose to be induced in the 37th week at the recommendation of my care providers and ICP Care community members, and delivered a beautiful and healthy baby girl. Even though my birth plan changed, I had a wonderful induction experience and am forever grateful for the ICP Care community in supporting me during my pregnancy.
Because of this community and the ICP Care website, I was able to advocate for myself and my baby by educating myself and staying up to date on the latest research and recommendations in the scientific obstetric world. The doctors and midwives at my practice had a one size fits all approach to ICP patients, which I did not feel comfortable with. Being educated thanks to the ICP Care community, I was able to communicate my concerns and preferences to my providers in a meaningful way.
Don’t be afraid to advocate for yourself and lean on the community members for advice and support.