6 frequently asked questions about rheumatic diseases and pregnancy

Written by: Dra. Noemí Patricia Garrido Puñal
Edited by: Top Doctors®

Rheumatic diseases encompass many diseases that affect the reproductive age, so that good planning pregnancy and good control of it depends largely on whether it comes to fruition and the couple can enjoy your child at the end of same.

Is it possible pregnancy having a rheumatic disease?

None of rheumatic or autoimmune diseases contraindication absolutely pregnancy. The decision always has the patient, but should know the risks of it and agree with the r eumatólogo the best time to do it.

There are rheumatic diseases that affect conception, there are others that are associated with decreased fertility by affecting sperm, and others that increase the number of abortions or fetal loss. In addition, some treatments used can cause birth defects in the fetus. Also it should be noted that pregnancy may aggravate some of these diseases.


When is the best time to conceive having a rheumatic disease?

Regardless of rheumatic disease that suffers, the best time is when the disease is under control. If possible, the disease should be in remission, that is, under complete control, but this is not always possible and therefore at least the minimum possible activity is sought.

Although this should be agreed with the rheumatologist, the right time in a mild or moderate disease is when at least three months is in remission and if the disease is severe, six months.


Who should track a pregnancy with rheumatic diseases?

To make a good follow up the case, it is recommended to use multidisciplinary units with at least one specialist in gynecology and one in Rheumatology. In general, it is recommended that visits are monthly, although it depends on the disease and the severity of it. We also must make own analytical controls of pregnancy and rheumatic disease, without forgetting that the pregnancy itself without altering the normal values ​​mean that an outbreak is occurring.


Should we discontinue medication for rheumatic diseases to conceive?

In any case the medication without consulting with the usual rheumatologist should be suspended, as this may cause a worsening of the disease hampering or preventing conception.

Yet, as explained above, there are drugs that should be suspended prior to conception, as they can affect the fetus.

What happens if you have rheumatic disease is the father?

Rheumatic diseases do not cause infertility, but there are some drug treatments, taken by men, may affect the future fetus, causing malformations. So also in the case of men raised parenting is necessary to plan with your rheumatologist, modifying treatment other than harmful to pregnancy until the moment of conception.


What are the main rheumatic diseases that affect pregnancy?

There are several rheumatic diseases that can affect pregnancy, of which the main ones are:

  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease that can affect virtually any organ and also to conception and pregnancy. On the other hand, pregnancy may lead to a worsening of the disease, especially in patients who have had complications in previous pregnancies or suffering from moderate to severe renal impairment.
  • Antiphospholipid syndrome: during pregnancy may cause fetal consequences such as loss of weeks without morphological alterations, loss of three embryos before the week of gestation or before 34 weeks premature birth preeclapmsia, eclampsia or placental insufficiency
  • Neonatal lupus: anti Ro / La antibodies can appear associated with multiple autoimmune diseases and also in people who are not suffering from any of them. They are very important in pregnancy, as they are responsible for the so-called fetal pathology and neonatal lupus.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis and spondyloarthropathies: during pregnancy, often there is an improvement in symptoms but with a flare after delivery. In all these diseases is very important prior disease control and prevent the use of dangerous drugs to the fetus, waiting time needed for cleaning the body before pregnancy.
*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Dra. Noemí Patricia Garrido Puñal

The prestigious Dr. Noemí Patricia Garrido Puñal is a specialist in rheumatology and autoimmune diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia. In addition to training in national centers and universities, it has also been resident at the Royal Free Hospital in London. During his career he has combined specialist patient care with research and study of rheumatologic diseases, a fact that has expanded its knowledge and experience, making it a top - notch expert.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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