Okay, as I stated in my “I’m Back” post, I got pregnant and had a baby since the last time I posted on here. The pregnancy was a difficult one due to a high risk factor plus the fact I was pregnant with arthritis and polymyalgia. To make a long story short, my doctors consulted one another (the rheumatologist, my primary care doctor, and my OB) and decided that the benefits of me continuing my oxycodone use during pregnancy far outweighed the risks.
When I was told I needed to stay on my pain meds throughout pregnancy, I was a bit conflicted. I even tried weaning myself off of the meds without telling my doctors because I didn’t like the idea of taking such high amounts of opiates while I was pregnant. Not taking the pain meds left me completely immobile, and I had 5 other kids to take care of, so that was not going to be an option. I tried to research anything and everything I could on the Internet about oxycodone and pregnancy, and found little to no information. No studies have been done, obviously, so there was no data to pull from. But it made me paranoid every time I had to take a pill. So if you are pregnant and have been prescribed oxycodone or oxycontin or Percocet during pregnancy, I’ll share my own experience with you. I can’t promise you that your experience will go the same way if you take oxycodone during pregnancy, but I can tell you what I myself experienced. Also, I have to say I am not a doctor and cannot give you medical advice and I am not telling you that you should take oxycodone when pregnant because I’m not opening myself up to that liability. I am just telling you about my own personal experience. With that being said, I will say if you are NOT prescribed oxycodone during pregnancy, DO NOT take it. If you need it and your doctors prescribe it, that’s one thing. If you do not need it and you take it recreationally, that is not okay.
How Much Oxycodone Was I Taking?
At first I was taking one 15 mg pill 5 times a day. This was oxycodone, not oxycontin or Percocet. The difference is that oxycontin is time-released. Oxycodone is not. Percocet has Tylenol in it. Oxycodone does not. Eventually, at about 7 months pregnant, I had weaned myself down to one 15 mg pill in the morning, one 15 mg pill in the afternoon, and a half a 15 mg pill at night. So at the end of my pregnancy, in total, I was taking about 37.5 mg of oxycodone a day.
My doctor told me my baby “might” have withdrawals when she was born. I was freaking out about it. Every day I would search the Internet trying to find studies that indicated what her chances were of actually going through withdrawal. Nothing is out there. There is no data to research. No studies to reference. But I figured, if I breast fed her and then weaned her off of the breast milk, she wouldn’t withdraw since there would be trace amounts of the drug in my breast milk. I thought this might work in theory, but really had no idea because the doctors didn’t have any answers and I had no idea how much of the drug was getting through the placenta or how much would get through my breast milk. It did, however, work. My daughter did not suffer a single symptom of withdrawal.
I should also mention I was taking prenatal vitamins in addition to 4mg (mg, not mcg) of folic acid a day to counteract any effects the oxycodone might have been having on her. The folic acid I used I got from Amazon.com because it was cheap and effective. It was the Nature Made Folic Acid 400mcg, 250 Tablets (Pack of 3). I popped ten of those suckers a day. Literally, ten a day because folic acid comes in much smaller doses than what they wanted me to take.
So to sum it up, I took my medication as prescribed, ate right, took my vitamins and folic acid, prayed every morning and night, and my daughter was born perfectly healthy and suffered no withdrawals at all. If you are pregnant and are taking pain killers that have been prescribed to you and you are worried and want to ask me any questions at all feel free, because I remember what a nervous wreck I was when I was pregnant and didn’t know if my daughter was going to suffer withdrawals after birth or not. I thank God she didn’t.