Pregnancy Forum - Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy
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Home » Pregnancy & Baby Forums » Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy



Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy

Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy



How can I control the intense itching that is associated with ICP?

Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy, or ICP, is a rare condition that affects approximately 0.5% of pregnant women. Usually, the condition develops during the third trimester and will stop after delivery. If you had ICP during a previous pregnancy, your chances of getting it again are about 50%.

Cause

Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy occurs when there is an increased amount of bile in the bloodstream, because of a backup in the liver. When the bile builds up in the bloodstream, it leaves the skin with a severe itching sensation.

Symptoms

The most common symptom of ICP is an intense itch that begins on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. The itch will then spread to other areas of the body. Because the skin becomes so itchy, most women will scratch it and a rash will develop. Another common symptom of ICP is jaundice, or a yellowing of the skin. Although not all women will experience all characteristics of the condition, other possible symptoms include fatigue, dark colored urine, greasy bowel movements, urinary tract infections and abdominal pain.

Tests and Diagnosis

When a pregnant woman complains of severe itching, jaundiced skin or other complications, the doctor will usually test for intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy. To determine if ICP is present, a blood test will be performed. The blood test will be screening for increased bile levels and liver enzymes. Occasionally, an ultrasound or liver biopsy might be required to fully diagnose the condition.

Treatment

The intense itching of intrahepatic choleostasis of pregnancy can be controlled with anti-itch medications, antihistamines, oatmeal baths, oral steroids or skin creams. In more severe cases, doctors may choose to prescribe medications that help bile secrete properly. Women with ICP will be monitored closely during pregnancy to ensure that the developing fetus is healthy. Because the fetal liver is not able to remove bile acides from the blood properly, the mother's liver takes over for the growing baby. In a woman with ICP, the bile levels are already elevated and the levels can cause damage to the fetus's liver. There is an increased risk of preterm delivery, stillbirth and meconium aspiration at birth for a woman with intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy.





Comments: Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy

Comments 1 to 4 of about 4.


jennalexie - 760 days ago.
hi ive been having blood tests done for o/c my last one was my alt was 31 and my bile was 2 they have repeated it and im waiting for the bloods to come i am very itch all over anyone help ?

lifebaby825 - 1158 days ago.
Just wondering how many have dealt with cholestasis of pregnancy & when you were induced. We are waiting for lab results to come back, but my doc feels that I do have this. He is acting like it is no big deal & doesn't want to induce until 38 wks. I am not comfortable with this after reading how most woman are taken at 36 wks to prevent stillbirth. I am terrified if we wait that long something bad will happen to my baby. I can't stop worrying over this & that's not healthy either. I'm currently 35 wks 4 days & won't see my doc until 36 wks 2 days...any info or advice would be appreciated!

suzi - 1901 days ago.
i had this with maja and was induced ;ast year for iy at 37 weeks and had biweekely NSTS

~* Yummy Mummy Shell *~ - 1973 days ago.
i have the big itch!! I hate OC its horrible unfortunately i have also suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum severely and lost over 3 stone. I am being induced on 20th April (at 35 wks pregnant) cos of the risk of still birth and cos im soo poorly with all these stupid pointless conditions! Has anyone else suffered with both OC and HG, i was wondering if they were related?


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