Health Blogs | lupus | Pregnancy

Lupus pregnancies - the concerns spelled out in black and white

March 30th, 2012 by despitelupus
While this article doesn't reveal anything groundbreaking, it does touch on a subject that is worthy of reflection. The article, published on Medical News Today,com, talks about the effects that diseases like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis have on a woman's plans for a family. It seems that new research has found that more than half of woman with RA or SLE have fewer children than desired. While factors that influence the smaller family size include infertility and miscarriage, I was most intrigued by the mention of patient choice as a factor...because there's so much to weigh when considering a lupus pregnancy.

While you can read about my two fabulous high-risk pregnancies in blog posts past, and the ease with which Deirdre and Bernadette came into this world, the ideas of getting pregnant, staying pregnant, and caring for my kids post-partum weren't quite so easy. There was a ton of planning involved, precautions were taken, risks were mitigated, and many prayers were said. My two little ladies are the biggest blessings in my life (with Johnny being a very, very close 1.5), but the jury is still out on whether I'm going to "go for it" a third time. I have a lot to consider, and a lot at stake, as those gals need a mom who is as healthy and happy as possible. So I need to make decisions that will give me the best chance of making that happen. 

What do I consider? Things that are touched on in the article...which remind me that I'm not crazy to carefully weigh the pros and cons. As quoted in the article: 

 "Our study highlights important reproductive-health concerns for women with RA and lupus," said Dr. Clowse. Study findings reported that concerns about inability to care for their children, adverse effects from medications taken during pregnancy, and genetic transmission of their disease to offspring lead to fewer pregnancies in women with RA and SLE.

These are things I consider daily - and while I always pictured myself with three little kiddos - sometimes you have to stop while you're ahead, and you have to follow where life leads you. 

Of course, I don't want to act out of fear, either. I wouldn't have these two gals in the first place if I had let fear of an unsuccessful lupus pregnancy paralyze my decisions to get pregnant before. 

Decisions, decisions. Whichever way I go, with Johnny's 100% declared support, and those two adorable faces staring at me each day, I think I've already come out on top. 
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Tags: lupus, Rheumatoid arthritis, Pregnancy

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