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anyone heard of this?

15 replies [Last post]
By KaraLH on Tue, 10-31-06, 16:23

Ok, I'm on this site because of my daughter, but I actually have a question about me! I hope this is a good place for this because I didn't want to fill up the main board with this one!!
I have 3 kids, due with 4th in two weeks. After each child I have had some kind of allergic reaction with hives that start on my belly and basically spread everywhere. My first experience was actually pretty mild, got some cream and antihistamines and it was gone within a couple of weeks. (I mean completely gone, no itch, no redness)
After my second, I ended up in the ER. (took myself) it had spread to my neck and the er doc gave my a histamine blocker and antihistamine. It got worse, went to my primary doc, got prednisone, (this is after a week) finally got some relief. Took two doses and over a month to clear up. 3rd child, had a plan. As soon as I saw the first spot I went in to the doctor, got a shot of depo-medrol, and a dose pack. Cleared up by the time the pak was gone.
Here's the thing. I have talked to all of the anesthisiologists, and they do not think it is a med allergy. It starts about 3 days after giving birth. For what they use in the epidurals, that is an unheard of response, to be so delayed.(I worked in surgery, so not only do I know these guys, I also know a smidge about med reactions, I am also allergic to several antibiotics and as soon as the med in in my system, I react)
Last winter I had a reaction to some hair product within 24 hour of using it, ended up in the er, given epi, and then antihistamines, it would go away, after three trip to the er, I finally ended up at an allergist and took steroids for 3 weeks. That one was bad. I'm just praying that after #4 I'll be able to get it under control before I have to get epi again and steroids.
Anyway, any woman out there ever had a "child birth" reaction?? Maybe it's hormonal changes??


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By on Tue, 10-31-06, 17:06

Quote:Originally posted by KaraLH:
[b]I am also allergic to several antibiotics and as soon as the med in in my system, I react[/b]

First, I wanted to mention that I have two food allergies -- peanuts and sesame seeds. The reaction to each is not exactly the same. I can usually tell what something was cross-contaminated with. I could not explain the difference, but I can feel the difference.

Quote:Anyway, any woman out there ever had a "child birth" reaction?? Maybe it's hormonal changes??

Don't think this is the same as what you are talking about, but thought I'd mention it. When my sister-in-law had her second baby she suddenly developed all-over body hives. They could not find an actual *cause* for the hives and they lasted about a week, I think.

In her case, what they think caused it was stress. Her baby was full-term and healthy, but only about 2 1/2 pounds, and the doctor thought the hives were her way of externalizing the stress. (I hope I've worded that properly -- it's been about 13 years.)

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By luvmyboys on Tue, 10-31-06, 17:34

Yes there is a hormone related rash. Unfortunately I cannot remember it's name but I am sure you can find it online...I think it starts with a p? Anyhow, during my 1st pregnancy a dr tried to diagnose me with it and prescribed steroids. My pharmacist recommended against taking them unless I was really uncomfortable so I didn't. I researched the condition and it did NOT sound or look like what I had. (Turned out I was having an allergic rxn to a new bra...it's happened to me 3 tims now. ) But this condition can happen during pregnancy or after and through the duration of breastfeeding. The dr told me to expect it to continue until my cycle started again. (Of course it didn't because it was an allergic reaction and as soon as I took off the bra it faded in a couple of days.) Good luck!

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By KaraLH on Tue, 10-31-06, 18:11

Yes I do know what your talking about it's called PUPP. Puritus uritcaria plaque of pregnancy. Which my doctor says is not it. I think only because it starts a few days after I have the baby. I think it might be that though. Just an odd case?!?!?!

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By Momcat on Tue, 10-31-06, 19:27

Since it happens every time, I think the proactive approach is best. Does your doctor think this warrants a few extra days in the hospital after the baby is born to observe you?

Is there something you do/eat only right after a baby? Just trying to look for a pattern here... Delayed reaction to something in the hospital, other than meds, considering your hair-product experience?

Just in case, do you have an epipen for yourself?


[This message has been edited by Momcat (edited October 31, 2006).]

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By JenniferKSwan on Tue, 10-31-06, 19:31

Do you take pain pills after giving birth? Usually on my second or third day of being on pills I get the "codeine itch". No hives for me but lots of itching (sadly I don't realize I'm doing it which probably looks strange to others visiting me). My friend gets the hives. It's odd because it doesn't come on right away for either of us, but instead it's like we have a build up of the drug in our system and then we react.

I do the same thing with nsaids like Advil. My hives come on 2-3 days after taking (if taking continuously for my back pain). I hate those hives because my hips swell so badly it feels like they might physically explode! Aspirin on the other hand is an almost immediate ana rxn.

Good luck!

Mommy to Aiden (1/26/05) PA,wheat,barley,soy,egg and others yet to be discovered and Connor (7/21/06) with possible egg allergy

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By Ree on Tue, 10-31-06, 20:17

I'm severely allergic to sulpha drugs and it took 4 times to figure it out because I didn't react until day 3 of being on the meds. Everyone, including docs, said it would be an immediate reaction. Not true. I'd question the drugs during labor..

I did a search on drug allergic reactions:
"What are the symptoms of a drug allergy?
The most common symptoms are itching, redness, swelling of the skin, welts, and a runny nose. Symptoms of a drug allergy can occur fairly quickly, possibly within minutes of taking the first dose, or they can begin several days after taking the drug. About half of all allergic reactions occur one week after starting the drug. Most symptoms should disappear in 3 to 5 days after stopping the drug. "

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By KaraLH on Tue, 10-31-06, 21:17

Quote:Originally posted by Ree:
[b] Everyone, including docs, said it would be an immediate reaction. Not true.

About half of all allergic reactions occur one week after starting the drug. Most symptoms should disappear in 3 to 5 days after stopping the drug. "[/b]

That was what I was told about the immediate reactions. But the other thing that has caused all doctors to puch the drug thing out of the equation is the fact that my reaction does not tend to clear up, but instead actually worsens.

I don't take codiene because after the first reaction and my history with antibiotic reactions, we figured I must be allergic to it. When I had a reaction after my second daugther we were stumped! I take Aleve, and either Extra Strength Tylenol or Vicodin after birth. All things I take regulary other than after childbirth. I take Vicodin almost daily right now during pregnancy because of chronic back problems.

No I don't have an epi-pen and had never thought about one until my daughter was diagnose with FA's and prescribed one. Then I thought about my allergies and wondered if they could get worse. Then I remembered about all of these reactions and how each time it seems to have gotten worse and that they did give me epi in the ER last winter for another reaction. How slow can I be?????

I know we'll be proactive again with this birth. get the shot and dose pak right away, then maybe I'll have to have a talk to my doctor about my history again....



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By rebekahc on Tue, 10-31-06, 21:28

I'm allergic to that gel stuff they put between the monotors and your belly (also the stuff they use for ultra sounds). It always takes my belly longer to heal from that stuff than it takes my bottom to heal from the delivery. I get itchy hives and then blisters from it. Since it's not ingested not sure if you could have a systemic reaction to it or not??

Good luck with delivery!

P.S. Perhaps you could take steriods in advance this time?

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By April in KC on Wed, 11-01-06, 08:02

Have you checked out the symptoms of Cholestasis of Pregnancy, a/k/a ICP? I think it usually starts before childbirth but I think it can also occur afterwards. Seems like there's a website, maybe [url="http://www.itchymoms.com,"]www.itchymoms.com,[/url] that tells how to tell the difference between cholestasis of pregnancy and PUPPPs.

I have gotten itchy from my epidural meds before--and it occurred pretty quickly, not days later. That's not to say that it couldn't occur later...my son's amoxicillin rxn occurred on the 4th day or so after he started taking it.

Re. hormones and hives...I'm thankful to have three beautiful boys, but I have also lost three pregnancies. In two of the miscarriage cases, within a day or two of the loss, I developed bizarre and profound "cold uticaria" or cold hives. That's where you get hives in response to changes in temperature. Weird? Yes. I saw an immunologist who observed it in his office by placing an ice cube on my arm and watching it puff up. He wanted me to get an Epi-Pen and avoid jumping into cold water. But...within a couple of months of the loss, my symptoms would lessen and finally go away. So....do I think hormones can affect histamine responses? Sure do. I don't understand it, but I believe it.

Good luck controlling your mystery reaction.


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By TJuliebeth on Wed, 11-01-06, 20:23

Did you notice sweating excessively after your last pregnancies...I ask because I did after both of mine, and I was told it was normal...something to do with your body regulating and adjusting to not being pregnant anymore...

The reason I mention it here is because I know that toxins/body waste are excreted by sweating...perhaps the drugs from delivery were making their way out of your body thus causing hives?

I don't know if that makes sense medically or not...just an idea I thought I throw out there...

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By KaraLH on Wed, 11-01-06, 23:56

We thought at one time it was the gel for the monitors also because that is approx where the rash starts. But I have never, ever reacted when I've had ultrasounds or ever time they check the heartbeat. (at my doctor it's all the same brand and the stuff at the hospital)
I have never sweated excessivly afterward either.
It may always be a mystery! Hopefully we'll get it controlled early on this time too, like last time.


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By momll70 on Thu, 11-02-06, 00:04

I know someone whose lips swelled both times after epidural. And I got itchy hives after giving birth also, about 3 or 4 days later, but one of my friends told me that epidural can cause some itching. Maybe allergy to meds.

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By Daisy on Thu, 11-02-06, 03:07


Google postpartum hives. Many results come up on childbirth sites. You are not alone, but they don't seem to have a good handle on what causes it.

One site seemed to suggest it may be due to hormone fluctuations.

Hope this helps,

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By needinformation on Thu, 04-07-11, 04:30

You may have a reaction to the epidural dye, if they used one, especially is you are allergic to iodine. This can have a delayed reaction. Betadine used to clean the injection site has iodine and can cause a reaction, also.

I have had problems with both. After the epidural I get a rash, fever, and had a delayed anaphylatic-like reaction with the last one. Luckily, they were using it to inject steroids--so the steroids they injected, I believe, probably helped. Had the reaction during the night after a late day injection. Neck (Salivary/thyroid?) also swelled up. Woke up in pain and in anxiety (from breathing or the pain from my skin being swollen around my jewelry). Had an epi pen. A following day started non-stop sneezing--had to get more liquid benadryl. Hope this helps.

Not saying that they used something with iodine or that you have an allergy to it.

But, it is a serious allergy to have; and can be fatal if you ever get a CT or kidney test or myelogram, epidural, etc. with ioding based dye.

Hope that this helps!!!

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By needinformation on Thu, 04-07-11, 04:37

Hormones definitely affect immune responses and it can affect cancer growth and treatment. And sometimes certain chemicals affect our endocrine system that supplies certain hormone and pre-hormone levels so that we get a secondary or tertiary effect.

There are hormone-reactive tumors.

That is why testing is done and even cancer treatment/therapy done in accordance with its type--whether it is hormone dependent and the level of ones hormones.

I am not a doctor--but, twenty-plus years as lab tech, licensed nuc. tech, EMT trained, and some nursing school and science degree. Did research.

As always, check with you physicians!

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