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TTC Baby #2 - Undermedicated b/c of PM Drs Ignorance & Lack of Care To Research!

babyeedollbbabyeedoll Posts: 4
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:52 AM in Pain Medications
I'm new on here, but am desperate for help and support so I cut to a new post w/o a bio! I am being undermedicated because my pain management doctors are ignorant and don't really care to do the proper research to justify their dosing. I was once on much larger doses of medication and on not only narcotic pain meds, but muscle relaxers and nerve pills (neurontin) and was prescribed IMM relief morphone.

I became pregnant with baby #1 unexpectedly and my PM drs yanked me off all meds immediately and put me on tylenol only. Extremem withdrawals and I was immediately in the most pain I could imagine. Then I did the research and found out that it safe enough to be on some pain meds. I also learned from my own research that I could have miscarried b/c it is most detrimental to a baby when medication intake is abruptly changed, it needs to be gradual. I was switched from morphine to methadone (20mg a day!) which was not that much! The only reason they switched me to methadone is b/c it is the only narcotic in its class known to have some studies done b/c of drug addicts getting pregnant and transferring to methadone (methadone clinics). I suffered in some pain but tried to keep the meds low. My baby was born 1 week early and they did not detect any medication in his system. He is very healthy and I am blessed! That was Jul of 2009.

Now we have since been trying to conceive baby #2. They don't now why, but I've had trouble getting pregnant so it's been 17M of TTC. My doctors have kept me on methadone because they refuse to switch even in the TTC phase! They won't prescribe any other drugs to help b/c those are known to not be healthy for baby. I've been in considerably more pain and as a mother I also need to do more than care for myself! Last year they were willing to increase my meds to 30mg, which seem to quickly degrade in effectiveness. This past year I've had more pain flare-ups than ever and the severity of each flare-up seems to get worse. I've gone through a whole new review of my condition and no real changes on the MRIs, I'm just in more pain! They refuse to increase my meds. I haven't left my house in 3 weeks and I'm in the most pain ever! Their refusal is not based on real knowledge. What is the magic number of milligrams not healthy for baby? They don't really know that. Methadone clinics give some women 200-300mg of methadone daily. I'm only on 30mg daily. It's not fair I be penalized and now my family b/c of their lack of knowledge, no real justification as to how they reached their number and no care to really do further research.

I don't know what to do. I want to run to a hospital, but that's an emotional move I suppose! I just don't know who to go to what to do. I'm in so much pain, suffering and nobody else in my life living in my area to help other than my husband. I'm helpless.

I've lived my entire adult life in pain with Fibromyalgia, 3 herniated discs unoperable b/c their not "bad / blown out" enough, pinched nerve in both L & R shoulder blades, Sacro Joint issues (undiagnosed potential sciatica of SI), Slow Transit Constipation condition, IC (interstitial Cystitis of the bladder), TMJ. The back pain and Fibro cause the most debilitating pain, so much pain I get nauseated from the pain. Laughing and a slight shake in my spine causes so much pain.


  • Sorry to hear you're in so much pain but I think you need to find a Gyne/Obs Dr who specializes in pain management if you're planning a baby. Try finding a High Risk Obstetrician and maybe they can help you. Consider trying aqua-therapy with a Physiotherapist and warm pool therapy for your pain. Even acupuncture with a Specialist while TTC may help pain levels. Keep looking for a PM Dr. to help you. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • I worked in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit 20 years ago, and had to care for babies of mothers that were on narcotics, cocaine, etc.

    I remember caring for twins that were born very premature, and had seizures because the mom was on Methadone. We had to give them seizure medicines for weeks. It was scary for me to see that happening.

    As a chronic pain patient, I empathize with what you must be going through, but think that your doctors are really looking out for your future babys interest. It must be so difficult...but I applaud you for working through this to have a healthy baby.

    Much luck and prayers,

  • I know that pain medication can be taken during pregnancy, but you are automatically considered high risk and have to see a neonatal specialist. I plan on taking my pain medications when I decide to try to conceive, but it is something that I have thought long and hard about for years. My doctors are supportive, and I plan on meticulously planning everything that I can beforehand. I trust all of my doctors, and I have a tremendous amount of respect for each one of them.

    There are many people who cringe when you mention taking medication during pregnancy, but it is the only way that some women can have their own child.

    That said, if I were in your shoes, I would listen to my doctors, and follow their orders. If I really, truly did not agree with them, I would look for another doctor.

  • babyeedoll said:
    It's not fair I be penalized and now my family b/c of their lack of knowledge, no real justification as to how they reached their number and no care to really do further research.
    While I understand and empathise with your situation, I also don't think it is fair to the unborn child to have an addictive medication running through his/her body. A child should be brought into the world with a complete deck stacked in their favor, and nothing that could have a risk of effecting them either at birth or possibly even later in life. There are simply not enough studies (as you mentioned only methodone) done that would assure me that taking a medication that causes addiction might not harm my child at some point in their life. How do we know that this won't cause a child to be more prone to addiction behaviour later in life?

    I consider myself open-minded and I have given this a lot of thought (not only today). As adults we have choices that our unborn do not. We are responsible for their well being, and every parent wants the best for their child. This is only my opinion and I am positive that I don't have all the answers, but the knowledge that I do have and what I feel is what prompts me to come to my own conclusions on the subject.

    If a person is in so much pain that they can't go without it long enough to carry a child to term, perhaps their pain limits their choices as well.

  • I also agree with Robin's advice and I understand how frustrating it is to have so many obstacles thrown in your path. You are young, a mother and wife, just trying to do the natural thing of having a baby. Believe me, I know your pain and I think Fibro is evil }:) My kids are pretty much grown now and I can't imagine handling fibro and back problems when they were young ones. I really feel for you and wish you weren't in this situation. I feel that your pain needs to stabilized, maybe they should reevaluate you and see if surgery is an option...something should be done for you. If your pain is uncontrollable, please go see a doctor. At home I use ice packs and heating pads and watch something funny (it really helps) when I feel terrible. Anyways, take care and I hope things work out for you.
  • I was treated by a special high risk prenatal center. They monitored me more carefully and helped contribute good info to my PM docs that 1. did not really do a whole lot of extra research and 2. mainly just acted out of ignorance undermedicating and ripping me off all meds twice, which could have caused a miscarriage or early delivery! Thank God my first baby was 100% healthy and I was able to be on such a low dose of pain meds that when he was born they did NOT detect any pain medication in his body! He didn't go through any withdrawals!
  • Many women when pregnant their body goes through an amazing phase. Many women report better health and have miraculously been free of conditions that had before pregnancy. During my first pregnancy my pain was significantly better. I was able to be on such a very low dose that my baby and no medications detected, no withdrawals.

    I've lived my whole adult life with pain and can't stand the fact I have to take pain meds, I pray for a way to fix my pain, by nothing I have is operable at this time.

    As long as I was able to stay on an extremely low dose, which I was committed to for my child, I had my baby. Yes, it's a choice I made b/c I selfishly wanted a child of my own and to raise a family. Having a pain condition my whole adult life shouldn't have to prevent me from basic dreams most people have. I did everything to stay on an extremely low dose. I waited til my 30s and even considered my cousin carrying the baby, but got pregnant somewhat unplanned in the beginning of my marriage, it was a beautiful surprise and wasn't willing to have an abortion!
  • And once again, no surgical option is available to me! I cried to hear that again!!

    You know, my toddler and 7yr old stepson are amazing little sweethearts that provide wonderful moments of smiling, love, laugh, comfort and much pain relief. When I keep busy and just do what I am supposed to like you said. Be a good wife, mother and woman I can busy myself and forget some of the pain!
  • You do have the right to decide about pain medications, but I am going to take a huge risk and tell you a story, a true one.
    I know someone, she was in PM for RSD...for almost 5 years and discovered that she was pregnant, 10+ weeks along before she discovered it. She was on some 15+ different medications for RSD. She immediately took herself off the majority of them and was talked into staying on methadone for the duration of her pregnancy because her doctors, the perinatalogist, the PM doctors, and her ob, all felt that her risk of the RSD spreading far outweighed the risk to the baby. She managed to taper her methadone dose down to less than what you are taking.
    Despite all of that, her son was born- 18 hours post his birth, she noticed the signs of withdrawl in her son. She notified the nurses right away, and despite all of the promises, all of the reassurances, she and that baby went through hell for the next 6 weeks, while he was tapered off methadone. Because of the immaturity of his system, the tapering was one step forward and two back- there were times she wasn't allowed to hold him because any touch irritated his already hypersensitive nervous system...he cried unconsolably- day and night..He spent the first 6 weeks of his life, in NICU, with nurses, while they cared for him, they were not his mom or his family. Mom was there, as often as she could be, which was day and night. Dad was there just as much..His mom cried, and the nurses all told her it wasn't her fault, but you can't tell that to a mother who is watching her newborn clenched tighter than any fist you've ever seen, or his jaw clamped shut so hard that he had to be pried open to be fed. He didn't suckle instinctively.
    Methadone, despite all of the studies and what you have read , while safer than the alternatives, is not harmless to an infant. You , were very, very fortunate in that your first child didn't show significant signs of withdrawal. I am almost positive that he went through some though.....even if you didn't recognize it.
    This little boy, while healthy today, went through a horrific 6 weeks and so did his mother. There isn't a time all of these years later, that she doesn't feel guilty when she talks about the time of his birth or looks at him and watches carefully for any signs of problems.
    Be grateful that your doctors are trying to watch out for the wellbeing of your baby. Most times, during pregnancy, the hormones do wonders for chronic conditions and that may well be the case for you.
    I know that if this mother could go back and do it all over again, she would have listened to her gut and stopped the methadone too.
    How do I know that? I am her.
  • Hi Babyeedoll, your kids sound precious and I know they are a huge bundle of joy. Children grow up so fast and I sure miss those early years. Enjoy it while you can! My personal choice when I was pregnant was to avoid all meds even Tylenol. This was however years before my chronic pain started. You seem to be smart and well informed and I am confident that you will do the best for your family.

    Sandi, thanks for sharing your experience with us.

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