Wife, 41, pregnant, asthma bad - what next?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 3/7/2013 6:21 AM (GMT -6)   
Wife has had asthma for 4-5 years. She takes the blue pump and purple one and is usually pretty good. However, shes now 20 weeks pregnant and has been getting worse over the past two months (which apparently can happen with pregnancy).

To say the NHS have been clueless with this is the understatement of the century. Multiple visits to GP, referred to consultant who said he didnt need to see her, two trips to A&E, two trips to Medical Assessment Unit at hospital (sent by GP). One broken rib also due to coughing.

Each time clueless. No idea what to do because shes pregnant.

She did take prednisalone a few weeks ago (took for 14 days) and there was some improvement but a week after stopping it all came back. Apparently, you can't take it for too long if your pregnant.

Anyway, she was admitted yesterday and is currently on nebuliser. I still get the impression that they've got no idea at all what they're doing at the hospital.

Hopefully, a chest consultant will see her tomorrow, or failing that I've got a private appointment for monday for her. (Awful that its going to cost me money to pay for healthcare when the NHS that I've paid taxed for all my life can't cope!).

Anyone been in similar situation and know what the next step in treatment might be? Seems to be the only way to get anything done is to suggest it yourself....

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Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 2386
   Posted 3/12/2013 5:43 PM (GMT -6)   
Perhaps a visit with the OB Doctor, and request them to contact a Pulmologist and get a safe working treatment for both her and the baby.
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California Cat
Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2013
Total Posts : 265
   Posted 3/12/2013 11:34 PM (GMT -6)   
This might not help at all, but chocolate is from the Theobroma tree and is a source of Theobromine, a bronchiodialator. It is pretty closely related to theophyline used in some inhalers.
And, a study in Sweden? or a neighboring area showed babies of mothers who ate quite a bit of chocolate during pregnancy had happier babies. How they judged, I don't recall.
I've never heard of a real downside to eating chocolate, but caffeine may be an issue? I don't know how much it has, or what becomes an issue. I ate it myself and don't know of an ill effect.
I have used chocolate for asthma for myself and my son. It took about 10-15 min. to help. It did make a difference when we had no inhaler available.
Just a shot.

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Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 8384
   Posted 3/13/2013 9:57 AM (GMT -6)   
My asthma also flared during pregnancy but I was able to get it back under control with a 7-day burst prednisone package. Plus twice daily use of my pulmicort inhaler.

Prednisone isn't a great drug to take while pregnant but it isn't the worst, either. Oxygen deprivation for baby is much more dangerous. Perhaps she just needs a higher dose of pred for another week or so and then regular maintenance with a steroid inhaler. What is triggering her asthma, allergies? viral? See if you can remove the triggers, too.
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California Cat
Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2013
Total Posts : 265
   Posted 3/13/2013 4:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I went to the allergist today, saw a booklet and thought of you so I picked it up. "Breathing for two" A guide to asthma during pregnancy from the Allergy and Asthma network - mothers of asthmatics.
2751 Prosperity Ave., Suite 150
Fairfax, Virginia, 22031-4397
Download in Eng/Span, single copies - free

"...(FDA)classifies medications for use during pregnancy in categories A-D and X. Most asthma medications fall into category C and can be used during pregnancy when the benefits outweigh the potential risks.
Inhaled budesonide is the only inhaled corticosteroid to receive category B status, meaning "there is no evidence of harm to the fetus." and paraphrased -'many meds can be used during pregnancy under physician supervision...'

I assume you are both carefully maintaining your wife's super healthy diet rich in natural vitamins and minerals, especially getting lots of folate, calcium, and protein. There's a great book in the "What to Expect when you're Expecting" series "What to eat when you're Expecting". It's actually terrifying (not really) because it sounds next to impossible to achieve. But, if you don't try to follow every single idea as law, it's really quite good. I admit, I had pizza more than one time a month. I also am not sure I could have eaten every single mg of nutrition they recommend, but my son was 8lbs, 9oz.
If you try to limit all the other risks, you've given your baby a good foundation. Don't forget that stress itself is tough on Mom, Dad, and Baby-to-be too. Try not to laugh in disbelief - yeah right, lady, like it's easy? but try really hard to relax often and let the stress flow away. I'm not just spouting bubbles of hot air - I learned I had cervical cancer when I was pregnant and didn't know I'd get to keep my son til he was 7 months along. Then, I didn't know if I would be there to raise him til 3 mo after delivery, after surgery was successful. I decided to deliberately put away the fear as much as I could so both of us could be as happy as possible. My eyes were not closed, I just addressed that which I could change, and let that which I could not take a back seat.
I just found this in the booklet too - a recommendation to use nasal irrigation with saline,
and a help line
ASK NURSE CHRISTY - 866-277-2934
M-F 10am - 1pm Eastern Standard Time.

The best of luck to you three.

California Cat
Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2013
Total Posts : 265
   Posted 3/31/2013 7:02 PM (GMT -6)   
I hope things are going well for your whole family.
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