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itchy feet

(14 Posts)
helpitsmyfirst Sun 29-May-16 03:13:20

Please help I keep waking up to itchy feet and am currently sat in the bath which to be perfectly honest doesn't seem to be helping much. Is this a normal pregnancy symptom and are there any tips to get past it?

itsalljustaphase Sun 29-May-16 04:20:04

Hi, itching can be a normal (annoying) symptom so in most cases it's not something to worry about, just frustrating when you want to sleep. However it's not possible to say on a forum - in more rare cases it can be a sign eg of ICP/OC or other complications. Please call your midwife unit and speak to them about it. You aren't wasting anyone's time. I was itching and found out I had ICP - the midwives did a blood test on the day I called them at the unit, and after that weekly blood tests (it took a few weeks for the liver function tests to show it up), and when they did show I was given medication to help keep the baby safe and was actively monitored until delivery.

In the meantime being cold helps! So a cool bath really worked for me/ keeping the bedroom cold and aqueous cream with menthol added helped too. I feel for you, itching is horrid when it's keeping you awake, am awake now feeding my little one and I much prefer these sleepless nights to the ones I had from itching at the end of my pregnancy!

jjc80 Sun 29-May-16 05:05:45

Agree with PP get yourself up to maternity ward tomorrow & ask for a blood test. I had ICP or also called obstetric cholestasis, also like PP was diagnosed after second blood test, a week later. I initially had itchy feet which then spread to hands & rest of body itched too. I too was on daily meds & in hospital for at least weekly monitoring, they also do bloods & liver scan etc to make sure no underlying issues. I was induced at 38 weeks. They typically will induce at 38/39 weeks but if your blood levels got really high would possible do it earlier, you also will have to give birth in a consultant led ward & will get monitoring during birth.

Don't go googling & worrying!!! There is some scary stuff out there but the research is (very) old, the consultants are clear now that with medication, monitoring & early induction any risks are reduced to pretty much the same as someone without the condition.

In terms of managing the itching, mine got soooo bad before the meds kicked in, that took about two weeks but once they did my levels & the itching really settled down thankfully. Speak with midwife tomorrow about anti-histamines, they are generally fine to take during pregnancy, they don't really help with the itching but they have a mild sedative affect which can help to sleep through it. Cold is also what helped me, so I bought loads & loads of ice packs!! I had some in the freezer & also bought the first aid types that you can just shake - I would sleep with ice packs on my hands & feet! smile We went to the theatre one day & I had to take my shoes off & put ice packs on my feet, I must have looked a sight! If you've ever watched friends I was like that episode when Pheobe got chicken pox & she's not supposed to scratch!!
If you do have OC/ICP it can be pretty miserable - people underestimate how unpleasant itching is & can really affect your sleep so find ways to look after yourself. I worked from home for my last few weeks after diagnosis as was so tired & uncomfortable. The main thing to remember is that your baby should be absolutely fine & this is temporary - pretty much the moment baby was born the itching stopped. I now have a gorgeous little girl, nearly 5 months old & she's healthy & well.

I was quite worried when I was originally diagnosed, pregnancy can be stressful enough right & didn't know anybody who had it to speak to - come back & chat/ask any questions if it will help! smile


helpitsmyfirst Sun 29-May-16 08:14:33

Thank you so much guys, this is my first pregnancy so everything is so new to me. I've already been seen twice due to swelling of my hands and feet but thankfully no pre eclampsia. Just very swollen sore hands and feet, if I can ask my itching is also my hands and tummy, is this what you guys had? Xx

itsalljustaphase Sun 29-May-16 10:32:25

Morning, it would vary, sometimes my hands or feet, sometimes all over, sometimes just my arms and stomach. For me it was fine during the day/ a little itchy but could keep me awake at night. And then randomly I'd have a blissful itch free night before it came back again. Although the soles of feet and/or palms of hands are the 'classic' symptoms, from reading some people don't ever itch on their hands and feet and some people only itch there. Also the level of itching doesn't always seem to always correlate to the bile levels which are I think the bit that is bad for the baby. Please do call your midwife unit today and get checked, lots of people itch during pregnancy and it's not ICP/ OC but it's important to be monitored if you are as there are drugs you can take and part of the active management is early delivery to keep the baby safe. Insist on monitoring please, although most midwives are very up to date, awareness has definately increased in recent years and some may be less aware and just suggest it's skin stretching/ hormones. Given you are swelling up I'm guessing they may be monitoring you more anyway so it may be one more test for them to do. Good luck and go make that phone call, it doesn't matter that it's a Sunday the midwife units are open all of the time. I felt like I was being stupid and making such a fuss calling but they couldn't have been more lovely saying it's much better to check. And as it turned out in my case it was the right thing to do even though it took weeks to show on the tests.

jjc80 Sun 29-May-16 10:35:49

Hi hon

Yes OC is typically indicated by itching on the soles of your feet & palm of your hands. I had really bad itching on my belly too, lots of people said that was normal & just to do with skin stretching etc but mine was really
My LO is my first baby too so I know how everything worries you! smile
Oh meant to say you don't have any sort of rash or marks with OC/ICP - it's like an internal itch.
Have you phoned midwife unit yet? They will likely see you today as if it is OC they do take it seriously & want to get treatment started ASAP. But as I said as long as they diagnose it & treat any possible risks are reduced to similar levels of someone who doesn't have it. How many weeks are you?
I was about 28 weeks when I went for blood test although I'd had the itching for a couple of weeks at that time. My first results just one reading was elevated, they did repeat bloods a week later, results the following day & then into hospital the day after to start monitoring & medication etc.
Like PP said it may be just normal itching but from what you've said so far it does sound like it maybe OC.
Let us know how you get on & please just ask if you have any other questions! smile

itsalljustaphase Sun 29-May-16 10:37:07

Just did a quick Google and itching is on lots of sites as things to watch out for in pregnancy. Don't panic but do get checked, you need proper trained medical advice and tests to make sure it's nothing. X

jjc80 Sun 29-May-16 10:38:26

Ha! I think we must have been writing our responses at the same time there!! smilesmile
I've just been reliving the OC with my partner - it's so horrid, I'm in 4 month sleep regression at the mo so am shattered but would take that any day over the itching! X

itsalljustaphase Sun 29-May-16 10:41:06

Cross posted, but agree with all Jcc has said. My results were similar only ALTs were elevated at first and biles increased later, I was itching for about 5 weeks from 30 weeks before officially diagnosed and put onto drugs but was monitored from when I called. X

itsalljustaphase Sun 29-May-16 10:45:51

Done it again! Glad your little one is fine, it really was horrid and as you said I don't think people can understand how awful itching can be. It's a different kind of sleep deprivation now and much much better!

helpitsmyfirst Mon 30-May-16 23:45:19

Oh my gosh so sorry my phone has been playing up and hadn't seen any of your replies!! Thank you so much for the advice I have my midwife appointment in the morning so I'm going to mention it then and request blood tests, I'm 34 weeks and 4 days now, will let you know what she says when I'm done, I just feel like such a pain as it was only Thursday that I had been seen and monitored for the swelling. But it's so nice to know that I have people here I can turn tosmile my sil keeps telling me that I'm worrying over nothing and just to drink loads of water (bear in mind she has no children) and it's probably heat, I'm overreacting and even had the nerve to make me feel silly about getting a taxi to and from hospital the other day instead of driving. (My boyfriend was working out of town and I didn't want him coming back before I knew exactly what was going on) xx

helpitsmyfirst Tue 31-May-16 20:51:14

Went to the midwife and just told her I had itchy feet and I didn't even need to ask for a blood test she just said about it straight away smile how long does it take for them to get back to me if anything is wrong? I forgot to ask as I was so tired xx

PickledLilly Tue 31-May-16 21:49:40

Another person who had cholestasis here. They got back to me very quickly and got me on medication really fast which controlled the itching really well for me.
I agree with everyone else that staying cool really helps with the itching. Be aware if you do have cholestasis your experience may vary depending on the care trust where you live e.g whether they want to induce early, at due date or not at all - all depends where you live. If you do get a diagnosis I'm happy to share my experiences of it helps. I'm currently pregnant with my second and waiting to see if the OC comes back or not!

helpitsmyfirst Wed 01-Jun-16 07:37:25

Thanks so much I only had my bloods done at 3pm so not expecting to know straight away, fingers crossed I hear back asap smile

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