Thursday, March 06, 2008

It's a Number's Game

Proceed with caution: I've written a novel, and those readers that make it to the end won't even be rewarded with a picture...

The irony of life is that as soon as I complain about something... well, anything, that "issue" seems to grow in magnitude. Remember last week when I was vocalizing my annoyance at having to see the doctor for weekly appointments that I found were slightly pointless? Now, as I am in week 37, I will be going to the hospital not once, but THREE times a week!

For those of you blissfully unaware (i.e. those of you who haven't a: heard my constant, incessant complaints, b: seen me walking around with frozen pea packs tucked into my shirt or the waistband of my hands, or c: have not actually scene the wasteland of hives and broken skin spread all over my body) I have developed a skin condition over the course of the last several weeks. It's called PUPPS, and in my opinion should more aptly be named "Hell on Earth". It's a rash that only pregnant women get. It is constant and can become inflamed. It can become painful and can even induce nausea. And if you're truly lucky, your skin can actually crack and bleed. Yippee!

Fortunately, it tends not to last longer than 6-8 weeks postpartum, and statistically does not seem to affect women who have experienced with previous pregnancies. Unfortunately, I am in the small percentage of the women who are afflicted multiple times (I had it with Lucy after she was born), and there is absolutely nothing that can be done, short of steroid therapy (which I have opted out of).

The doctors were concerned because the rash had spread outside of it's normal perimeter. I was getting hives and rash on my arms, legs, and even between my toes. They've run blood tests checking and rechecking my thyroid and liver enzymes. Luckily, everything has come back normal, and in the last week I have felt better than I have in weeks, no, months really. I'm really, really, enjoying pregnancy these days. I'm actually remembering how much I loved carrying Lucy. In fact, I get a little weepy-eyed thinking it's almost over.

This is why I was a little taken aback when the doctor mentioned the possibility of inducing me at 39 weeks. What the crap? After taking a look at my skin, the doctor has decided to err on the side of caution and run my labs again. Apparently there is a condition in pregnancy that is caused by elevated liver enzymes and it's symptoms are this crazy, wacky rash. It can cause fetal distress, which is also why I now have undergo twice weekly non-stress tests, as well as my weekly prenatal.

I would love and prefer to make it to my due date, and I would rather not be induced. That being said, Baby and Mama's health are what's really important. So, as of now, if the labs come back normal, AND the NSTs are normal, AND my rash does not worsen, I will get to go into labor naturally when this little girl decides it's time to leave the bed and breakfast called my womb.

A side note: Not that this means anything, but as of today, I am 80% effaced and 2 cm dilated.


Tiffany said...

Well now I feel bad for all of MY complaining! How awful...I will definitely pray for you guys that everything comes back normal.

I always have to throw in my 2 cents on being induced since all you ever hear are horror stories! I was on an extremely HIGH dose the entire time with Savannah and got through it [albeit after hours of being 'that woman' who screams so the entire floor can hear her]. So for every pitocin horror story you have...there's at least one good one, probably two!

Good vibes being sent your way!

Our Three Girls said...

Oh, Da! I'm so sorry to hear about all of this! Yikes! I'll be thinking about you and hoping that the last few weeks of your pregnancy are stress-free for the little bambino (and for you)!

April & Alisha said...

You definitely need some pampering now, We'll be praying for you guys. Let us know if we can do anything.

Sarah & Scott said...

da - what a pain. hope you are feeling okay! that is just awful...however, inducing or no inducing, i know you will be happy when the little one pops out and you get to meet her face to face! :) keep us posted!

love you,

amosclarkson said...

I know what PUPPS is like, but I didn't have it that bad! I feel your pain! I was unaware of the other stuff related to it, though. Glad you are feeling better and hopefully you'll just sail on through these last weeks ;) Thinking of you!