Can Cholestasis Cause Stillbirth?

Clinical studies clearly show that when obstetric cholestasis complicates pregnancies it may lead to premature births in up to 60%, fetal distress in up to 33%, and intrauterine death in up to 2% of patients.

How common is stillbirth if you have cholestasis?

The stillbirth rate at 37 weeks’ gestation and beyond for the entire population in the United States is approximately 0.1% to 0.3% (1–3 per 1000). More than 20 years ago, a striking case series of stillbirths attributed to ICP described obstetric outcomes of 8 women with 13 pregnancies affected with ICP.

Is cholestasis dangerous for baby?

It could be a symptom of cholestasis, a rare but serious liver condition that can result in stillbirth. Though there’s no long-term risk to your health, this condition can be dangerous to your baby if it goes untreated.

What happens if you have obstetric cholestasis?

The itching gets better after birth and causes no long-term health problems. A few women with obstetric cholestasis develop jaundice (yellowing of the skin owing to liver changes). Some women feel unwell and lose their appetite. Jaundice can also cause dark urine and pale bowel movements.

How long after birth does cholestasis go away?

Cholestatic jaundice of pregnancy is generally a self-limiting condition that occurs in the last trimester and disappears within 1-2 weeks after delivery. The cases of two women who developed severe intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy are presented.

How serious is cholestasis of pregnancy?

Key points about cholestasis of pregnancy

Cholestasis of pregnancy is a condition that slows or stops the normal flow of bile in the gallbladder. It can cause severe itching. The goals of treating cholestasis of pregnancy are to relieve itching and prevent complications for your developing baby.

Does cholestasis cause stillbirth?

It has long been known that pregnant women with obstetric cholestasis have abnormally high levels of bile acids in their blood, because the liver isn’t working properly. They hope to explain why an unborn baby’s heart could be more vulnerable to the effects of bile acids than that of its mother.

Is cholestasis of pregnancy an emergency?

Cholestasis of pregnancy, also known as obstetric cholestasis or intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy, can cause severe itching, especially on the hands and feet. The condition does not usually pose a serious risk for the mother’s long-term health, but it may cause severe complications for the infant.

Can cholestasis of pregnancy go away?

Cholestasis sometimes starts in early pregnancy. But it is more common in the second and third trimesters. It most often goes away within a few days after delivery.

Can ICP affect baby?

ICP can have serious consequences for the baby, with increased chances of premature birth, neonatal unit admission and stillbirth. Research shows that about 1 in 10 women diagnosed with ICP will have their baby early.

Can obstetric cholestasis harm my baby?

Cholestasis may increase the risks for fetal distress, preterm birth, or stillbirth. A developing baby relies on the mother’s liver to remove bile acids from the blood; therefore, the elevated levels of maternal bile cause stress on the baby’s liver.

How do I know if I have cholestasis of pregnancy?

Intense itching is the main symptom of cholestasis of pregnancy. There is no rash. Most women feel itchy on the palms of their hands or the soles of their feet, but some women feel itchy everywhere. The itching is often worse at night and may be so bothersome that you can’t sleep.

When should I be worried about itching during pregnancy?

While most itching during pregnancy is very normal and not a reason for concern, more severe itching may indicate an underlying liver condition known as intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP) or obstetric cholestasis (OC). OC is a liver condition that disrupts the flow of bile in the body during pregnancy.

What happens if cholestasis goes untreated?

Cholestasis of pregnancy is a potentially serious liver condition that causes sudden, severe itching. It’s also known as intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy, or ICP, and can be harmful if left untreated. Most of the bile salts are then returned to the liver through your bloodstream and recycled.

How do they test for cholestasis?

Diagnosis. Obstetric cholestasis can be confirmed by blood tests called Liver Function Tests (LFT’s) and a fasting serum bile acid test. If these tests are negative but the woman continues itching, they should be repeated.

Can you have cholestasis without being itchy?

No rash – Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy itching is not caused by a rash. In some cases, however, a rash may develop as a result of intense scratching which may damage the skin. In these cases it is important to note whether the itching caused the rash, or if the rash caused the itching.

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