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37 Weeks Pregnant & Taking Suboxone

Not sure if I'm posting in the right place but I need answers & advice. I am 37 weeks pregnant with my 4th child. I hurt my back (herniated/ bulging disc) due to a car accident & was prescribed 120 norcos a month by my pain management doctor then later by my obgyn. At 7 months pregnant my obgyn took me off the Norco without a taper plan and said she didn't want to worry about the baby having withdrawals at birth. She has only been an OB for 2 years and I don't believe she has experience in pregnant women with pain management issues. She told me to "double up on tylenol". Well by day two not only was I in terrible pain but I had really bad withdrawal and got scared about going into premature labor. A friend gave me a suboxone strip & said to take 4 mgs & that she could sell me the extra strips she didn't take from her script and I could taper by the time the baby was born. Obviously I never told my obgyn and she thinks I'm not taking anything. I've tried several times to get off the suboxone cold turkey and always resume within 24 hrs because I have 3 children I'm responsible for & have to take care of them- my husband works out of town. The withdrawals leave me in cold sweats with no energy and keeps me from sleeping which is hell!  I am terrified of the baby going through withdrawal from the suboxone, I  am down to 2 mg a day and am going to be induced in exactly 2 weeks. My obgyn said I can resume the Norco after the baby is born and I can breastfeed. If I taper down to .5 mg will the baby have withdrawal?
22 Responses
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Avatar universal
Hey  a big congrats on your new Daughter  what is her name??? anyway im so happy you and the baby are well  thanks for the update
.............................................Gnarly......................................
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495284 tn?1333894042
COMMUNITY LEADER
Congrats on your beautiful baby girl~
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Avatar universal
Just wanted to update. I had my baby and she was a healthy 7 lbs 11 ounces with no withdrawal symptoms whatsoever, she is perfect! I stayed on 1 mg of suboxone until she was born then switched back to Norco. She is beautiful & our family is complete- thank God!
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Avatar universal
Congrats on the 2 years of sobriety Amanda, that is amazing !

I'm feeling really terrible today- cold sweats, low energy, eyes tearing up, nose running, and worse of all my bones ache- I'm having a real rough time and it's very difficult to not take suboxone when I know it will make me feel better. I would never recommend anyone doing this in the 3rd trimester/ with a back injury- I'm already so uncomfortable as it is and the withdrawal just magnifies everything ten fold. I tried to stay busy today- left the kids w/ my mom and went to the bank and got my nails done. It definitely helps to get out of the house, laying around just makes you focus on the pain and it's miserable! I'm wishing I had done this a different way- been brave and spoken up to a doctor or switched obgyns or gone to the ER when she took me off the Norco. It's all very difficult though mentally but I just keep telling myself it's for the greater good..
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Avatar universal
I agree, its not impossible, please just get to the er if it doesn't go as planned.
Regulations these days have changed on mums to be with addicted babies and not for the better.
No wonder women are scared to speak out.
I can't tell you what to do as I'm sure you will do what's right for you and bubs.
I can imagine the stress your under right now, its not fun at all.
You really sound like a very together person.
Unlike me, you never intended to get addicted to meds, your was because of pain and I feel so bad for you.
Your right, we can't fix the past, but we can make our now and pur future better.
I know you never planned to be in this situation, and I also cried many nights, but there is a light at the end.
I'm just over 2 years clean and although I've just been diagnosed with CFS, I'm more happier than I've ever been.
I hope soon you will be, just as happy.
:)
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Avatar universal
32 mgs, wow girl that is a lot! Just goes to show you that it is not dose dependent on if a baby will have withdrawal. I've heard of women on very high doses have babies w/ no withdrawal & women on low doses have withdrawal and their babies are put in a methadone program in the NICU- my worst nightmare! I'm glad you replied, I really wanted to get the perspective of a mom whose been pregnant and on Suboxone.  This has been a terrible situation for me, when my kids go to sleep I have cried every night. Pregnancy and the birth of my babies has always been a sacred and special time for me- I always loved bonding in the hospital, meeting the new baby for the first time, and breastfeeding. It has always gone so smoothly for me, I've had 3 natural deliveries and have never had an epidural! I've always believed in being as natural as possible during pregnancy-  I also worked out daily with my first 3 and wouldn't even take tylenol or drink coffee. This pregnancy has been complete hell- every single day I have been totally immersed in worry- I have not been able to enjoy this pregnancy at all. When I took Norco all I thought about was would the baby withdraw at birth and what effect taking the pills would have on the baby. But the ultrasounds have all been very reassuring- I did two 3D ultrasounds as well and the baby looks absolutely beautiful! I don't know the gender btw, I wanted it to be a surprise since I'm getting my tubes tied and it's my last one. I was actually shocked when the ob did not refill my monthly prescription when I reached the 3rd trimester. Looking back, I think what would have been best is if I had gone to the ER when I was in withdrawal- then I could have another Dr. To advocate for me. But I had my three kids: ages 8,5, & 2- and I didn't want to drag them up there. I panicked. My friend had experience and I was scared I would go into preterm labor 3 months early. I think she was just trying to help and didn't want to see me in pain and she knows I'm responsible for my kids. All of that is the past and I can't do anything about it now but do the best I can in the situation. I'm getting induced in exactly two weeks- i wish I could stay on a stable dose of subutex and speak with my obgyn and a sub dr and be honest but I just don't see that ending well- it's too late in the game. I feel like I'm backed into a corner and cold turkey withdrawal off of 1 mg is my only choice- fortunately it's a low dose and not impossible.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Hi there. Please, please see a doctor who knows what the heck they are doing.
I'm so frustrated by this post.
Your doctor should never have taken you off the Norco while pregnant and your friend should never, have given you soboxone while pregnant.
Please get to the doc asap and get this sorted out.
I'm extremely worried about you.
This is now a vicious merry-go-round.
A good doctor, will never tell a pregnant woman to taper any drug.
This can cause not only early labour, but also complications when delivering.
I delivered my last child who is almost 4, while I was taking 32mgs of subutex. He was very lucky to suffer no withdrawals, but I was under my doctor and subutex doctors care the entire time.
You need all the correct information before making any decisions and the best way to do this, is to see a doctor who knows what the heck they are talking about.
You sound like a great mum who is stuck in a terrible situation.

Please look after yourself xx
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Avatar universal
Thank you so much, that means a lot! I'll keep you updated.
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7163794 tn?1457366813
COMMUNITY LEADER
Im here if you need me and i'll check in daily. Please be very careful and my prayers are coming your way.
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Avatar universal
I thought long and hard and given the circumstances I've decided that I'm going to stop suboxone no matter what. No matter how I feel. A lot of withdrawal is mental anyway, my dose isn't super high and people have come off of a lot worse. I would rather withdraw with the baby inside of me then to not withdraw and the baby have to go through that while I watch the nurses give the baby morphine. The risk of preterm labor is gone because I'm 37 weeks + 2 days: full term. All the ultrasounds look great and the baby is estimated to weigh 7 lbs. my last dose of suboxone was last night at 10 pm at 2 mgs. I haven't taken anything today and I don't feel sick at all but I know it takes awhile with subs.  I'm going to take the kids to my moms and say I'm sick and need help taking care of them. I am determined- I only have two weeks till my induction  but I may go into labor before then . I would appreciate all the support I can get while I get off of this- I know by day 5 I'll start feeling a lot better.
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7163794 tn?1457366813
COMMUNITY LEADER
I have 4 children....there welfare is most important. But i cant help but try to look at both sides...which side has best chance for you to keep your child. If that baby is born and starts w/ding.....what can happen??? If you talk to them ahead of time and allow the hospital to be prepared what will be the outcome? You need to get the opinion of a dr that prescribes the subs...and not a new dr either....a dr that has been doing it for a long time... they cant do anything to you for asking questions and u need to tell them your not getting them under a drs care.
That feeling in your stomach.....you have to put it to the side.....hard to do.....but doable.
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Avatar universal
You are right, I am totally terrified. My kids are my world, I'm also expecting a big settlement from  the car wreck- my plan was to buy a house where my husband works and to go back to school and finish my degree. Im getting back surgery and this should fix the herniated disc then I can get off the pain pills. I just wish she hadn't taken me off, we could have kept an open dialogue and if the baby had withdrawal they could handle it but instead I'm stuck trying to figure this out. I've heard of heroin addicts using suboxone in rehab for one week to ease withdrawal and then they're done. I can take 1 mg a day and not be sick so my tolerance isn't super high. 2 mgs helps my back pain and energy levels. Talking to a suboxone doctor sounds like a good idea but I don't know if it's too late for that.
Helpful - 0
7163794 tn?1457366813
COMMUNITY LEADER
IMO....b/c the taper off of subs is different than other drugs. Its such a slow taper that i just dont think 2 weeks is going to get you off w/o withdrawals for YOU! If getting off the subs puts you in w/d why wouldn't it do the same for baby???? I hear ya loud and clear, btw, your scared ******** and i dont blame you! Its much easier for us to sit back and say what to do, were not in it, you are. I get it....what about talking to a sub dr....like calling and seeing if u can get in to talk to one and get their opinion?
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Avatar universal
The problem is she is not a seasoned Ob, this is only her 2nd year of practice. My regular ob that delivered my 3 children previously & who I was comfortable with no longer accepted my insurance so I had to switch. I would have had no problem telling the old OB. I begged the new OB not to take me off the Norco and she said if you can get a prescription from your pain management doctor than you can continue taking it. I tried and he didn't want to prescribe me anything this late in pregnancy, he said have your OB handle it- basically no one wants the liability. I felt very alone and didn't know where to turn. I think it would be wonderful if I could be honest to my ob but she made it quite clear she didn't want me taking anything in the 3rd trimester- I have another friend on Subutex who stopped cold turkey at week 36, 6 days later the baby was born and suffered no withdrawal & she never told her ob. What if you guys are wrong & the ob freaks out & CPS is called & I lose all of my kids? If the baby does not have withdrawal then there is no reason to test the menconium or cord. If I taper over the next 2 weeks then jump off then why would the baby have withdrawal? I know it's a risk, but it's also a risk to tell the ob.
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7163794 tn?1457366813
COMMUNITY LEADER
There are adults, full grown adults, that have w/d on .25/.50mg so a small baby??? I promise you, you wouldnt be tge first woman to walk in and tell your OB this. A seasoned OB has heard this before....to get from 8mg to .25 would take months of slow tapering to avoid w/d. Im not quite sure what your friend did....but i do know this....when baby starts w/ding they're going to know anyway...perhaps getting ahead of it is the responsible way to handle it? Your dr can be prepared when the baby comes?
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1 Comments
The Ob won't call cps if you are honest with her. They will call if you or the baby test positive or the baby has withdrawal symptoms. Every drug you have taken from 16 weeks of pregnancy is stored in the meconium.
495284 tn?1333894042
COMMUNITY LEADER
The only way to be safe here is to talk with your doctor and be honest.
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Avatar universal
I do know Subutex is better but as stated I do not have a prescription, I panicked because I was in terrible withdrawal and had children to take care of in addition to a back injury.  My friend offered to help and told me she & several people she knew took suboxone while pregnant & everything turned out fine. The advice so far is to tell the ob which I think will only lead to her to call CPS or have the nurses put my baby in a 6 week methadone program even if the symtoms are minimal to none. So if it's 100% that the baby will have withdrawal even at a dose as low as .5-.025 then my only choice is to cold turkey withdraw. It is too late to switch ob's & obviously my ob does not understand opiate withdrawal during pregnancy.
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7163794 tn?1457366813
COMMUNITY LEADER
I think alot of people think suboxone and subutext are the same.....there not. Subutext is used for pregnancy....yes, the baby will w/d. Your almost to term....you MUST tell your OB who is an obvious idiot for taking you off the pain meds cold turkey to begin with.
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1235186 tn?1656987798
COMMUNITY LEADER
Suboxone contains naloxone and is not approved during  pregnancy.

Subutex doesn't  contain naloxone,  and is better during pregnancy.

For the safety and well being of your unborn child  and to protect yourself from  cps please talk to your ob.
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Avatar universal
and if they test the cord for drugs ? It is still best to be honest I myself would not stake the health of my baby on the advice of a friend. I still must advice that you speak with a Dr.
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Avatar universal
From everything I've read & others who've had babies while taking suboxone the withdrawal is greatly reduced when compared to methadone/ other opiates- many times the babies have zero withdrawal. This is what my friend told me & why she gave me suboxone. She said it was dangerous for the ob to take me off the Norco without a proper taper plan/ counseling and that it could cause withdrawal symptoms in the baby/ early labor. The friend who gave me suboxone had a baby boy in 2010 and she was on pain pills & then switched to 8 mg of suboxone in her 3rd trimester. Her baby had no withdrawal and CPS did not get involved.
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Avatar universal
Hello HippieChick.. Welcome to the forum.. Not much of a friend to give you sub while preg. There is no way around this You need to speak with the Dr. If you have to change OB to a more experienced one then do it but you must tell them. Yes your baby will have wd I do not see how he/she could not suboxone is addicting and as you are finding the wd is difficult much more then pills to get off of.. If you do not speak with your Dr. CPS will get involved. Call tomorrow and make a appointment tell her what you told us You were scared of wd and scared of her inability to properly get you off the drugs and you panicked.. For the safety of your baby who needs monitoring and your Peace of mind, speak with your Dr.. Take good care of yourself and your lil one.. lesa
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