When Christina DePino took to Facebook to vent about itching during pregnancy, she didn’t expect the complaint to possibly save her unborn baby’s life.
The US woman has shared the experience in post that has since gone viral, in a bid to warn other mothers that might notice similar symptoms.
“If you’re pregnant & your itching REALLY bad, don't ignore it!! Started having severe itching a few weeks ago, (it was keeping me up at night) thanks to a little Facebook complaining & the urging of Jennifer, Britney & Monica, I got the itch checked out & found out I had pregnancy Cholestasis, which is basically harmless for me – except for the crazy itching – but could have caused a stillborn after 37 weeks!”
Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy is a liver condition in which bile cannot flow from the liver to the duodenum. It can occur late in a woman’s pregnancy triggering intense itching, usually on the hands and feet. It can have severe complications for the unborn baby including preterm birth, lung problems and stillbirth.
“I was officially diagnosed last week and had to get her out this week,” Christina continued. “We are so blessed! Thanks guys for giving some amazing advice which may have just saved our precious girl's life! Yeah we are SO BLESSED & in awe!!!”
At 37 weeks and two days, Christina delivered a healthy baby girl, Lexa Rae.
"I would like to urge pregnant women who are suffering from severe itching to be their own advocate," Christina told Today. "Know the signs and symptoms and then contact your doctor. Don't ignore the itch, a simple blood test could save your baby's life."
In the last 10 months, her Facebook post has been shared over 27,000 times with thousands more still commenting and liking to this day.