ICP Care Team Member
I am the mother of two beautiful baby boys. I am also a registered nurse working specifically in gynecology and oncology. Prior to being diagnosed with ICP during my first pregnancy, I had never heard of ICP before. My hope is to help raise awareness of this condition and help women advocate for themselves regarding the care they are receiving, as well as providing emotional support.
When I was 26 weeks pregnant with my oldest son, I began itching on my hands and my feet. It was mildly irritating but I did not think anything of it. After a few nights of itching and not being able to sleep, I started researching and that is when I discovered that this is a primary symptom of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy. The next day I called my OB. Not even three weeks later, I was officially diagnosed with ICP. From there, we decided on a 37 week induction. That plan rapidly changed when my blood pressure started spiking at 32 weeks and we discovered that my son was IUGR (growth restricted) and less than 5th percentile. At 33 and 3 weeks, I went in for a routine non-stress test where my blood pressure was 160/100. I was immediately sent to triage, given my first steroid shot, met with an MFM who told me to prepare myself for a 34 week delivery and admitted for a 24 hour urine.
The next day, I was officially diagnosed with preeclampsia with severe features. The plan was a delivery at 36 and 0 with the understanding that this plan could change any day. We did daily non-stress tests in the hospital, weekly BPP’s and a repeat growth scan at 35 weeks. Due to a breech presentation and how many complications I had developed, we decided to do a scheduled c-section at 36 and 0 and my beautiful little boy was born 4 lbs 15 oz and 17 3/4 inches long. Tiny but mighty, we did not have a NICU stay. We did have some issues with jaundice, blood sugar control and he had to pass a car seat test, but just four days after he was born, we were discharged home.
During my second pregnancy, I ended up diagnosed with Cholestasis again at 32 weeks and began twice weekly NST’s. I also had growth scans every 4 weeks due to my history with IUGR. Thankfully, my beautiful boy came safely into the world at 37 and 3 weeks, despite a failed VBAC induction and an emergency c-section.
I am grateful for the ICP Care organization and support groups for providing me with a place to seek emotional support while making sure that I am also getting the appropriate treatments. With the support of ICP Care, my husband and I felt comfortable to continue to grow our family and I hope that my personal experience of having ICP, an IUGR baby and preeclampsia with severe features, as well as my education and work experience as a registered nurse can help support women during their pregnancies’.