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PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 12:17 am 
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Oh boy Idk where to start...

Hello,
My name is Sara. I have been addicted to opiates for a couple years on and off. I got clean and became pregnant in 2012. It turns out, my daughter had Turner Syndrome. We lost her at 23.5 weeks, her heart stopped on November 16th (my dad's birthday) and on November 18th she was born still.. It pretty much wrecked me. They treated me with pretty heavy doses of morphine through the whole labor process, I think it was to help more with the mental pain than physical. Well from then on I picked up the opiates again and haven't been able to stop since.

I used anything I could get my hands on basically, but it was 99% pills (morphine, roxys, vics) and would use Suboxone when I couldn't.

Anyway, fast forward to December of 2013, I found out I was pregnant yet again (not planned). I hadn't stopped using but tried so hard to stop. I researched and found out that it was too dangerous to stop cold turkey when pregnant as it could result in a miscarriage. I had just lost a baby I didn't want to lose another one.

So My husband met a guy who got a steady script of Subutex and started buying them off the street. He too was addicted and we both decided to stop with the other pills and only use Subutex as it was safer for pregnancy. After a while, the guy started to sell less and less of his script so my husband decided to get on the program himself. He finally as able to after a couple months, and there were a couple slip ups along the way due to no Subutex so that we didn't withdrawal.

The problem is that he can only get Suboxone. I read that Subutex was safest during pregnancy. So I have been using Suboxone now since about the middle of my pregnancy. I tried to taper off of it, even a slow taper, but found my body actually starting to need more! So I started to try and look for a doctor for myself.

So far I have had NO LUCK finding a doctor who will treat me in my area. I have called everywhere, up until today. Most places are full, others will NOT treat a pregnant woman. All this time has passed and time is running out and Idk what to do. I am so scared of losing my baby. I found out I am having a little girl and I love her so much already.

I do not want to go on methadone, as I have researched that and definitely do not want to go down that route. What should I do? and can CPS take my baby if she is born with Suboxone in her system, because I don't have a script? I just wanted to do what was best and I got myself stuck.

Sorry this is extremely long, I am just so worried and have been doing constant reading of other women's stories, but most if not all of them got their meds legally. I'm from New York, I am not sure of the laws here concerning something like this. Can someone please help me? :(


Last edited by MomOf2Plus1 on Sat Aug 23, 2014 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 3:50 pm 
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That is a terrible position to be in Sara. Have you called every doctor, even those over a 100 miles away?

You are correct about taking Subutex and not Suboxone during pregnancies. They are afraid of the Naloxone in the Suboxone thinking it might harm the baby. I'm not a doctor so I have no opinion on that subject.

Use our doctor search up top the page. You can also try NAABT to help search too.

Sorry you're in such a tight spot. Keep calling until you find one.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 11:55 pm 
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Hello and thank you for your response.

I actually do not have a vehicle so I am dependant on medical transportation. I am not completely sure but I don't think they will take me anywhere out of county? Or at least no more than 45 mins away. If anyone knows this plz let me know. I already have a profile up on the NAABT site and update it every day. I also tried tue SAHMSA(I think it's called??) site as well.

I have become almost obsessed with reading information about this and trying to find help. I hope more than anything my baby does not suffer for my mistakes. I will never forgive myself if she goes through ANY amount of discomfort.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 1:32 pm 
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So as I have stated, I have been trying to find a doctor to treat me. I've been sending emails as well as calling places, but still no place has an opening for me :(

I did however receive an email from a treatment helpline from the Director of outpatient services. She told me I need to discontinue use of the Suboxone because it is unsafe for pregnancy. She also said this : "You can imagine how the nurses feel as they watch these babies struggle to live due to their Mom's addiction. Be prepared that you will have DCF in your life for quite awhile." This really scares me.

Another thing she said, that I really don't believe, was this: " Once you get down to 4mg. of suboxone the threshold to stop is there. Anything less than that is placebo."

I know what I am feeling when I reduce my dose after 4 mgs, as I'm sure everyone else here does too, and it is definitely not in my head.

I keep trying to get help but only keep getting more and more discouraged. I will keep try and in the meantime continue to lower my dose as much as I can until she is born and hope for the best I guess...


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:00 pm 
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That is such bull about the 4 mg statement. Same with the baby suffering after they are born. Do some searching in the Dr's section about having a baby on Sub and how the medical field totally messes it up. If you cannot find the article, drop me a PM and I'll find it. Print it and give it to the nurses. I hate ignorance about Suboxone in the medical field but they'll learn eventually.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:31 pm 
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Rule is absolutely correct! that woman's statement to you about those poor babies struggling to live was pure nonsense and not at all based in fact, but rather in ignorance about medication assisted treatment. and I dint know what to say to the four mg comment, because it's so ridiculous and inaccurate! it's certainly not in your head! the fact of the matter is that using proven medication to treat opiate dependence during pregnancy is the safe and responsible thing to do. there are many studies that show fantastic outcomes for both mom and baby, and that buprenorphine results in a lesser chance of neonatal abstinence syndrome, and if it does occur, it is to a far lesser extent than with full agonists. if you google janaburson's blog, and search for pregnancy related entries with the search feature, you will find very informative and valuable info that will make you not only feel better about your decision to take meds, but to give you accurate info that you can print out and share with your doctors and people like the woman you spoke with on the phone who fed you all that BULLSHIT trying to scare you into what her and some other people's cookie cutter idea of what recovery is. I'll try to post some links for you to the articles I'm referring to. this Dr. Jana Burson that I'm talking about is an expert in this particular area of medicine, and is especially passionate about the proper treatment of opioid addicts who are pregnant and in treatment with sub or methadone, and on her blog has links to many of the studies that show awesome outcomes for the babies born to addicted moms, as she attends many conferences on just this subject. I hope what you read will put your mind at ease so that you may enjoy this special time in your life. even if your baby happens to have NAS, he/she will be treated and comfortable through out the process, but it's important for you to become educated in the topic, so that no matter how the nurses may treat you ( some are ignorant and biased) which is unacceptable, but does still happen, you can make sure your baby receives only the appropriate care. often when nurses know that mom is taking Suboxone, they have a tendency to interpret even normal newborn behaviors as withdrawal, which is shameful, especially if baby doesn't need opiates, and is only being singled out for nas by ignorant nursing staff. ignorance abounds in this field of medicine and unfortunately, we as patients have got to educate ourselves so that we may advocate for ourselves. I hope I can be of some help to you during this trying time. I know it's frightening for you right now, but do try to enjoy the miracle you have growing inside you and will be meeting very soon...and find peace with the fact that you know you're doing the right thing for you and your child. I hope you're able to find a doctor to take care of you soon. I'll try to have those links up soon. hang in there!


Last edited by lizzieshug2013 on Fri Jul 04, 2014 7:37 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 11:02 pm 
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as promised, here are a couple of links to articles written about the subject for you to read:

http://janaburson.wordpress.com/?=pregn ... mit=Search

****I don't know why, but the first link takes you to her latest blog entry, now, in the top right corner, there's a search button, and if you enter pregnancy and neonatal abstinence syndrome in the search box, it'll take you straight to all the articles I was telling you about.

http://www.suboxonetalkzone.com/newborn ... -get-real/

I'm hoping a mod can come along and help with these links that I'm posting f or you. I'm not really sure why that first link won't go straight to the article I'm referring to. I usually dont have any trouble posting links.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:23 pm 
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Thank you so much for the replies and. the links! I read every and anything I can about this. I still haven't found a doctor yet but I've managed to wean from 6mgs to about 2.5 since around 32 weeks. I know the amount you take doesn't seem to matter when it comes to NAS but I figured if I could get down low enough maybe it could help? Either way it's something productive I can do in the meantime that may benefit her. Tomorrow is Monday, another day to search for a doctor who is willing to help me.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 9:41 pm 
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great job tapering down to 2.5 mgs! :-) as long as you're not feeling any physical distress, i.e., WD symptoms, then baby isn't feeling distress either. were you able to read the blog entries at janaburson's blog? she's got quite a few great entries about pregnancy while on bupe or methadone and NAS, and in one of them there's a link to a study appropriately named the MOTHER study, which followed the progress and development of babies in the study born to opioid addicted moms in treatment with methadone or buprenorphine for over a year, and the results showed that these babies even the ones who had significant NAS at birth, met all important developmental milestones on time or earlier than their counterparts in the study, born to mothers not addicted to opioids. the study fires into much greater detail than I'm able to relate here, but I do hope since you read lots of information about thissubject that you'll be able to read about this study in particular. I think it may help ease your mind a bit. Itruly hope you're able to find a doctor who can help you. I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers and will check the forum often for updates from you, please let us know how things go for you hun. we definitely care here and want the best for you and your beautiful baby :-) Keep your head up and continue to ask questions if you have any, and we'll try to help.
Lizzie


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2014 3:20 pm 
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Thank you Lizzy :)

Yes I did read the articles you posted and find them to be very relieving. I also read the split dosing article as well. I have been splitting my doses throughout the day because it seems to work better for me. I take either 1mg or .5 mgs every 6-8 hours depending on how I feel. Sometimes I need 3mg one day but some days I can get by on 2-2.5mgs. I want to make sure I feel no withdrawals, although I definitely feel like I should be at a higher dose, I'm not too uncomfortable ...it's more mental than anything really. Thank you so much for your help.

I also wanted to say that I know what I'm doing is not right, I should npt be using somebody elses script, which is a big reason why I'm trying to find a doctor. Also, no my OBGYN is noy aware of my use, and I realize that is probably not a good move on my part, BUT if my baby is born with withdrawals I will definitely speak up so that she can receuve proper treatment.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2014 3:32 pm 
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I'm glad you're feeling okay and that you read those articles too. they were interesting :-) hey, as far as right or wrong, you won't get any judgement here. we're all addicts, many of us have done things we're not exactly proud of,I know I have. I know what it means to do what you feel you must do. most of us realize that the patient caps and tremendous cost of treatment make it very difficult for people who really want help to get it. I'm still hoping that you'll find a doc to treat you in time for the arrival of your little one


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 23, 2014 8:36 pm 
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So this pregnancy was full of stress, worry and guilt, but in the end I'm sitting here with a beautiful, healthy baby girl, no issues, no withdrawals, she's just perfect. I never did end up telling my dr and was never able to get into a program. I do not recommend doing this because it actually made me feel a lot worse, plus if something were to have happened to my baby, it's best for them to know it all up front. I was just terrified of losing her, which. I can see how that would make me selfish..

I was using Suboxone, because I couldn't find Subutex anymore after the first half of my pregnancy.
I was able to lower my dose to 2 mg a day, taking .25 mg 4xs spaced out.

My due date was August 4th, but she was stubborn and I had to be induced on the 18th (so I had more time to stress and worry about the outcome.) She was born August 19th 8lbs 8oz and 21 inches long! She is the calmest most content baby I've ever seen.

My ending is a happy one, but I know this isn't always the case. If I were to do it over again, I would be honest with my dr about it. I couldn't enjoy a minute of my pregnancy with constant guilt looming over me. It created a very negative environment during labor and a very stressful hospital stay. I couldn't keep my eyes off of her and every little sneeze, twitch or cry sent me into a panic.

This site was very helpful to me during my pregnancy. I'm grateful to those who shared their stories and so I wanted to share my story too.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 2:08 am 
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Thank you so much for the update! I'm so happy to hear that you and your baby hada great outcome. No need to beat yourself up about having boy told your Dr. is in the past now, and all you can do now is look toward the future and leave the past in the past since you can't change it now anyway. You recognize that you should have been more honest with the doctor. I completely understand the fear you had of social service involvement and losing your precious baby. Unfortunately, stigma and ignorance about opiate addiction and treatment with medication is very prevalent in our society despite some people's best efforts to change all that, that kind of change can be very slow to happen.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2014 9:59 pm 
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Okay, so I had my baby 8 days ago. I'm am so hurt and disappointed in myselffor what my baby is going through right now. I am, and was on during pregnancy, 8 mg of subutex. I too like a lot off women I see on here was doing my research on thing the meds while pregnant, and I don't think that I found more than 2 posts of women staying that they had issues after birth. I thought that I was good and that my baby would be fine. OMG, if I could take it back right now, God knows that I would. My baby had been inthe NICU since birth and had been transferred to a children's hospital because he's been diagnosed with liver disease. His bilirubin levels were so high, 28 when they should be at.5, and his AST and ALT levels Ares in the 300s. He is having problems with his platelet count as well as his blood had not been clotting as it should. To see my baby like this is the worst thing that can happen to me. I don't know how I'm going to live three rest if my life knowing that I've done this to him and that any medical issues that may bff on going is going to be because of nee and my selfish ways. How did I do this to my baby???! What kind of mother Am I? Ladies, I was not using any other narcotics our any other street drugs at all, so I do honestly attribute alk of these issues to subutex.I definitely recommend that you all please watch out with this medication, because tryst me,this is nothing nice to go through


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 2:59 am 
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First I want to day that I'm very sorry to hear that your little one is sick. That's not an easy thing to go through. Although I wasn't addicted during my pregnancies, twice my babies, my first and second, were hospitalized with serious illnesses. One actually on life support during the first several weeks of life due to severe allergies to even breast milk, and a condition called failure to thrive. The second with meningitis, so I can identify with your feeling of wondering what you may have done. May I ask,did a doctor tell you that your use of subutex resulted in your baby's illness? highly elevated billirubin levels can be associated with a condition called jaundice, usually treated by placing babies under special type of light for several hours daily during hospitalization. There can be many factors,or no apparent factors at play that can cause jaundice in newborns,which is actually relatively common among all babies.
As for the clotting problems with babies blood, did a doctor tell you that your use of sub caused that?
I ask this because this is not an effect in neonates (from sub or other opiates) that I'm familiar with? Could it be that your doctor, knowing your history of addiction is trying to place all this guilt and blame upon you because of his/hospital staff's views on addicts/ medication assisted therapy during pregnancy & are not in favor of it? I have heard some women say that their babies had a difficult period of nas, that the nurses and doctors treated mom horribly for,and for this there's no excuse at all. medication for opioid addiction during pregnancy is the gold standard of care for mother and baby to avoid hosts of problems including fetal distress/demise, due to repeated exposure in utero to withdrawal and intoxication, also risks of placental abruption, premature birth, and miscarriage, to name a few, but (methadone and buprenorphine) have extremely safe side effect profiles in pregnant patients. And lingering effects baby may have of NAS can be treated immediately and appropriately, so that baby will be comfortable and have no lasting effects to baby. I certainly hope that the medical staff is not shaming or blaming you into thinking that you've done something wrong by treating your addictive disorder with medication. That would be shameful!

, I'm sorry for what your little one is going through, please let us know how things go for you both. hoping to hear from you soon. Please don't feel guilty for treating your addiction with proven medication. You made a good decision for you and your baby by being treated,and there's nothing wrong with that. perhaps a doctor,maybe even Dr. Junig could chime in here, as I have never heard of either of the effects you mention being caused by using buprenorphine during pregnancy, and suspect that doctors and or nurses may be trying to make you feel responsible for your child's illnesses because of their own prejudices. You asked "what kind of Mother an I"? my answer would be a one who cared enough for her baby to not use, and did the responsible thing! We're here for you,even if only to talk. many thoughts and prayers to you and your little one.

lizzy


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:33 am 
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Thanks Lilly, I really do appreciate your condolences and sympathy. The doctors did not tell me that my use of subutex caused these issues, in fact, when I asked, they tell me that they don't believe there's any correlation with the medication and my babies condition. But for me knowing that he's having such a time because his liver had been overloaded, in my head, I'm like what else could it be. I know that in my active addiction when I would over use the pain pills, my liver function world get thrown off and my alt and ast numbers would rise. It seems to me that this is the same thing that's happening here. He's a newborn and his little liver couldn't handle the subutex that I was taking. As far as the common jaundice in lots of babies, this is not that. As I said before his billi levels were at 28. This is extremely and severely high and not the average jaundice that must babies can get. They even told me that this is a problem that the lights won't fix. I really do wish that there were something else that I could place on, like genetics or something like that. But these conditions that he is in is much too simular to the effects of drug use for me to ignore.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 9:10 am 
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I hate for you to beat yourself up over something that is very likely not at all your fault. It took me a long time to come to the realization th at I hadn't done anything That made My babies sick. Sometimes babies are just sick,sadly, No rhyme or reason. As addicts we allow our guilt and shame to drive us deep into depression and anxiety, which can in turn fuel the desire to use to suppress these feelings. I am gonna go with the drs on this one though. Buprenorphine has been shown safe during pregnancy, and has been shown to have only a marginal risk of elevated liver tests in people whose livers are already compromised by conditions like cirrhosis or hepatitis. It's superior safety profile,Imo, makes it an unlikely culprit in your sons illness. often, the damage we do to our livers during active addiction is due to taking large amounts of opioid drugs and/or large amounts of acetaminophen that are in the Pain pills we took. You, however, made the wise and caring choice to not use those while pregnant, and chose a safe alternative to active use, medication! 8 mgs isn't a huge dose during pregnancy especially due to increased blood volume, and remember that only part of your dose is actually absorbed sublingually, and then must cross the placenta to get to baby, so odds are your baby wasn't exposed to enough Buprenorphine to cause the kind of damage your talking about. I know how easy it is for us to blame ourselves when our children are concerned, especially as addicts, but try to take it easy on yourself. You didn't do anything wrong Or selfish by treating your illness. In fact, I'd call it more selfless than anything, because continuing in active addiction would certainly not have been good for you or your baby. You gave that part of your life up and sought help with your addiction, and that's being a good mom. I'm going to look up some articles about the effects of bupe on the liver of a neonate and see what more info I can find for you that could possibly put your mind at ease, and will post you links to what I find. Just give me a couple hours, since my internet signal at work is hit and miss.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:05 am 
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Forgot to add a warm welcome to our forum, and please keep us updated as to how you're both doing. We're here for you! (((((((hugs))))))


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