Ever heard of Drug-Induced Lupus Erythematosus (DILE)?
No?! Well I had. Back in college I was misdiagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and treated for nearly three years before they discovered that it was actually a reaction to an antibiotic I'd been taking for years to treat acne (minocycline). The symptoms were awful - as you might expect for it to look, walk, and talk like RA. But once I stopped the minocycline, they all disappeared. It was borderline miraculous.
Fast forward a few (er, um, handful... some... okay 14) years and guess who started to wonder if her sore joints were actually a symptom of her bedrest (such a nice and logical explanation) or really the same type of drug reaction, this time brought on by some other medicine? Yep, me.
We first talked to our MFM and OB about it two weeks ago. The most likely culprit was the Procardia (Nipedifine) that I've been on for a couple of months now to reduce uterine "irritability" and hopefully fend of preterm labor. It's a high blood pressure medication, actually, and antihypertensives are one of the main categories of drugs that can cause DILE.
But it seemed more likely that bedrest was to blame and since I wasn't in awful pain, the risk/reward analyis seemed to land in favor of continuing the medication. Until Monday. Monday I began to feel awful, and overnight it got pretty damned unbearable. My Tuesday morning I was in enough pain to outright refuse to take the Procardia unless my MFM (who we were seeing that day) demanded otherwise.
She agreed that it was time to stop, and gave me some Tylenol 3 to deal with the pain until the effects of the reaction wear off (it can be anywhere from days to weeks). Fortunately for me, it seems the worst was over in 36 hours. I took a single Tylenol 3 and have been contending with the occassional plain Tylenol ever since. I feel SO MUCH better.
So at 32 weeks 3 days, we're off the Procardia. We'll stick with the Progesterone through 34 weeks, then discontinue that, too.
Our appointment went awesomely. Baby Boy is heads down again, so we got some adorable pictures of his smooshy cheeks and kissy lips. He's weighing in at an uber-healthy 5 lbs 8 oz - four weeks ahead, if you're wondering what that means. He aced the biophysical profile, and my placenta looks lovely.
The plan right now is to aim for a planned c-section under wonderfully calm conditions at 37 weeks. May 14th. The day after Mother's Day. Sweet Jeebus, it feels like we might actually pull it off!