Michelle Redpath-Lugo

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Michelle- Team Volunteers Page

My mission is to help educate woman on Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy. ICP has had a great impact on my family’s lives. We never knew that ICP even existed until I was diagnosed with my second child. I have a degree in Electrical Engineering and want to use my science-based background to give clear concise factual evidence on the risks of ICP, the best form of diagnosis and treatment and to just support ICP patients thru their journey.

I was finally diagnosed with ICP at 30 weeks with my second son but it wasn’t thanks to the MFM I was seeing due to Placenta Previa. Let me start from the beginning with this pregnancy. I was finally pregnant after having suffered a miscarriage. We finally were going to have a baby, our rainbow baby! I was already paranoid thinking something was going to happen. I had terrible morning sickness but that was normal. When we went in for our second trimester ultrasound at the MFM at around 20 weeks they told me I had placenta previa. My husband and I started to panic but it resolved itself by 28 weeks. At this point, I was extremely itchy on my belly to the point of scarring and making myself bleed and some light itching on my hands. I told the MFM and he said to just take Benadryl. Three days later my OB saw the marks on my belly and asked me about itching. She immediately ordered a Bile Acids blood test. Labs came back and I was diagnosed with ICP and got on the medicine URSO. My OB sent me to the MFM again since I had ICP. The MFM didn’t take it seriously and just said there would be early delivery and induction and nothing else. I felt uncomfortable with his treatment plan so my OB took over and lectured the MFM on how to properly treat ICP. By 30 weeks, I started to have premature contractions and was put on bed rest. By 32 weeks, I was itching everywhere especially my scalp which was the worst. By 33 weeks, baby failed an NST & BPP and that was the first of many hospital visits. I had several episodes of reduced fetal movement and failed NSTS and BPPs. At 36 weeks & 4 days I started contracting every 6 mins. They eventually stopped. Finally, at 37 weeks, we met our itchy rainbow baby via C-Section.

The most I can say is to always advocate for yourself and your baby. If you feel uncomfortable with the treatment you’re receiving, speak up. They are there for you and the safety of your unborn baby.

I have learned so much about ICP during pregnancy and from all the information on icpcare.org that I want to pass that knowledge on to someone who could be in the position I was in.