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Crohn's babies?

Hey everyone.

I have been feeling pretty good for about a month now since my initial diagnosis 4 months ago. Yay!

The mister and I were supposed to start trying for a baby this summer. That is soon. Now I am on Pred (10mg tapering off the next few weeks) and Imuran (75mg) and I've heard all sorts of warnings about getting pregnant on Imuran.

I am scared out of my mind about this drug and a baby. I want a baby soon (I'm 35) but also don't want to rush it while on medication.

I guess I am asking all the mothers out there what your experience with Crohn's and babies. Any success stories?

I am also worried about flaring up while pregnant. My GI doc is sort of telling me to "wait and see" but this freaks me out.

It's all so confusing and scary.
 
babies are scary business for sure. I posted a link that talked about pregnancy and AZA somewhere today. I think the overall idea was that it even shows up in milk and definitely enters the fetus. I would not do it. They say you need to way those risks with risks associated with going into a full on flair or emergency situation with fistula and stuff while carrying which is also mentioned as very serious for the baby as well as you.
 
I had been trying for kids as well with no luck. Here is what my GI and OBGYN have told me:
1. There is a 1/3 chance you will feel better, 1/3 you will feel worse and 1/3 that you will stay the same. It seems they really don't know until you are pregnant and even each pregnancy cane be different.
2. You can not be pregnant and take certain meds. Always check with an OBGYN they will know what you can take while pregnant and/or breast feeding.
3. My GI said to not get pregnant while flaring. Not only because you are not feeling great but because you may have issues nourishing your baby. Not healthy for you or the baby.
4. There are many people who have healthy pregnancies. My GI did say for some it can take longer to conceive. I am in that group!

Anyway, good luck! Keep us posted.
 
I second everything teeny said. I just had my son on Christmas Eve, and was told the exact same things as her before we started trying.

I had a resection in Nov 08, and was told that it would take me longer than average to get pregnant. We started trying in March, and were pregnant the first cycle. My pregnancy was amazing, the Crohn's was in remission, and I was told to continue taking the Imuran throughout the pregnancy, but to stop if I wanted to breastfeed. I stopped the Imuran about 4 weeks before my scheduled csection (I have a recto-vag fistula, so wasn't able to have a natural labour), and nursed for about 5 weeks before I had to stop...CD was back worse than EVER, and Imuran was giving me an adverse reaction when I tried to go back on it. I'm now on Remicade and Methotrexate to try and get me in remission, but I've been flaring since he was born...so almost 5 months now. So it's bitter sweet. I spend alot of time in the bathroom with him laying on his pillow on the floor with his toys. He doesn't seem to mind, but the guilt is overwhelming.

I guess the moral of my ramblings are that it IS possible to have a healthy, normal pregnancy with Crohns, and have a healthy, normal baby at the end of it. Even with the Imuran. Feel free to ask me anything, I'll help as much as I can.
 

butt-eze

Superstar
My friend with Crohn's just had her third healthy daughter last month. She too was on Imuran but discontinued when she found out she was pregnant. Some doctors believe that if you get pregnant in remission you are more likely to stay in remission and vice versa.

I did not know I had Crohn's when I got pregnant. Unfortunately, I flared during my first and third trimester and was diagnosed 1 month after I had my healthy baby boy.

It's important that you do what makes you comfortable. Every person is different.

Best wishes building your family :)
 
Thanks everyone. It's nice to know that it is possible to have a baby and have Crohn's. Of course I know that's true but sometimes it just seems so impossible.

I have felt great since the medication kicked in. I feel like I can carry a baby successfully and have a lot of nutritional knowledge to help with that. The true worry for me is the Imuran. My GI has not told me how long he wants me to be on it for. And I have no idea how long it stays in your system. Getting pregnant and then just stopping doesn't seem ok to me. I do want to breast feed and really don't want to pass anything on to anyone.

Thanks for the stories and keep em coming.
 
I also agree with teeny.
I have 2 sons. 1 before diag. and 1 after. I did have IBS issues when I got preg. #1 and they got better. WIth #2 I had a flare my 2nd trimester and had to go on entocort for about 10 wks. I was also on remicade the entire preg. I had 2 healthy babies. The OB was worried #2 would be small but he was over 7lbs.

I was told that the most important thing is for mom to stay healthy that way baby can stay healthy asa well!

Hopefully in about a year, as long as I am flare free, we well start TTC #3

Good luck
 
Hi Red Apple.

I'll be 36 in July. I'm also trying for my first baby this summer & my gastroenterologist has given me the go ahead. My partner has stopped his methotrexate for arthritis, so that we can start trying in 3 months. I take azathioprine & budesonide & without these I wouldn't be well enough to try to become pregnant. It's all about wieghing up the risk. In the UK, azathioprine (imuran) & budesonide (entocort) have been deemed safe for pregnancy. I posted a link to some research papers elsewhere on this site ages ago, in response to similar horror - style warnings about pregnancy & these meds (can't remember where I posted it now but if you PM me with your email address I will send the papers to you as an attachment).
 
I have nothing to contribute to this firsthand, as I am not on Imuran yet or ready to have children, but know it will be relevant one day. So, I'm glad there is a thread on this. :) I have heard some people say doctors say it is okay to have children while on Imuran and some who say it is not. If I remember correctly when I first met with my GI, and we were discussing what medications he planned on putting me on, he said that I could have children while taking Imuran. It's something you'll have to discuss with your docs, and I agree with what Amy said about doing what makes you feel the most comfortable too :) Good luck and keep us updated!
 

Lisa

Adminstrator
I got pregnant @June 2004 - after being hospitalized for a flare, was feeling better.....didn't realize the drugs I got in the hosp. probably messed up with birth control! ....... Was feeling VERY good for the first 5 1/2 months - in fact, didn't even know I was pregnant!!!!!.......I had lost weight when sick, so a slight gain was no big deal - didn't show, no morning sickness etc.......I was on 6MP at the time too.......continued that during the pregnancy, had a scheduled c-section (recto-vaginal and peri-anal fistulas)and my daughter was born March 8, 2005.....healthy but a peanut at just over 6 lbs.....

After I had her I was off drugs for @3 months, did breast feed but then started to flare and had the issues with the fistulas.....stopped breast feeding and started Remicade.......been doing pretty well since then.

No adverse effects seen in my daughter - she is healthy, happy, smart (too much for her own good sometimes! lol).......my big hope is she doesn't have any issues as she gets older with her digestive system.....

Oh - and I was 34 when I got pregnant.....
 
We hope to try for a baby once I get off the imuran. I will continue taking the remicade as it does not pass into breastmilk. I found this video very informative. I wish this video would get stickied as it has information for women trying to conceive, and those who are pregnant and breastfeeding. This is by far the most informative article/video that I have come across. Even imuran can be safe during breastfeeding if you take it at night and pump and dump in the morning. You may have to pump during the day so you have milk for feedings at night or offer formula at night but IMO the breastfeeding is worth it.

http://crohnstoday.com/the-impact-of-crohns-on-pregnancy/#more-147
 
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I wanted to add that my GP, OB, and GI all recommended I stay on the Imuran for the duruation of my pregnancy. I was flaring when I became pregnant, and the pregnancy put me into remission. It was a risk/benefit thing...but I had MEGA bloodwork too when I was pregnant, every 10 days, so they could monitor everything.

I was also told that remicade was not safe for pregnancy, but might be fine when breastfeeding.
 
Question for those who've been pregnant...did any of you consult with a high risk OB? I had never thought about it until i watched that video Lydia posted.

Also, did any of you have to have C-sections due to fistulas or other Crohn's related reasons?
 
I am male, but my GI told me that Imuran has the risk of causing birth defects, especially in some new studies (but related to males)
 

Lisa

Adminstrator
dreamintwilight said:
Question for those who've been pregnant...did any of you consult with a high risk OB? I had never thought about it until i watched that video Lydia posted.

Also, did any of you have to have C-sections due to fistulas or other Crohn's related reasons?

My pregnancy was 'high risk' - but I really didn't do anything different besides keep my GI doc informed.....I was in remission during the pregnancy.....even worked up until the day before my daughter was born! (LOTS of walking involved PLUS a somewhat stressful job - I'm a State Fire Marshal).....

I did have a c-section due to fistulas - was in the hospital only 3 days if I remember correctly - could have stayed an extra day but was feeling pretty good.....
 
I was told the remicade was fine during pregnancy and breastfeeding. My OB didnt like me going on entocort but my GI ok'd it and said it was safe and needed.

I saw midwives throughout my pregnancy. My chart was labeled high risk.The only thing different was I recieved a few more ultrasounds to check babies growth.
 
Hello!
I was dx with Crohn's AFTER I had my three children. But, I had symptoms for years and was told it was IBS. I didn't have to worry about any of the drug therapies, but I will say that with each of them, I felt soooooo normal! Ppl would complain about how constipated they would get and I couldn't wait to have that feeling!! It was a truly great experience! The other thing I thought was weird was that I never gained any weight while pregnant. The docs were never concerned. When I delivered, I would lose 20 to 30 pounds! It was really weird!! I wonder if that had anything to do with the disease???
 
I got pregnant while in remission and I stayed in remission for just over a year after having her. I didnt have to worry about meds which was nice. I felt so awesome during my pregnancy. I slept the best sleeps of my life. Food tasted so wonderful and eating was a pleasure. I just felt good all around. I loved being pregnant all the way to the very end. I only put on 28 lbs and I lost 20 right after birth.

I was considered high risk and had a few extra ultrasounds. Everything went well, and my baby was a healthy 6 lbs 5 oz. I had a c-section do to my history with fistulas.

If you do not have a history of fistulating disease then it is ok for you to attempt a vaginal birth.
 
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Astra

Moderator
I was exactly the same as kbuerg
I've been symptomatic for over 20 years, dx with IBS yada yada
got dx of crohns in 2005
but had 2 very healthy pregnancies, my kids are 18 and 15 now
I was glowing, blooming and the healthiest I've ever been whilst pregnant, no symptoms whatsoever. but, of course, I wasn't on any Crohns meds, cos I didn't have Crohns, did I? I had IBS!!! a very sarcastic lol
 
dreamintwilight said:
Also, to clarify...internal or perianal-type fistulas?
My OB and GI said ANY type of fistula, because if you tear during birth, the tear can develop into a fistula and that can be a disaster. Your c-section incision can develop a fistula too but its better there than your vagina. I was healthy at the time and my c-section healed wonderfully. Its the thinnest faintest surgery scar I have. I didnt have any fistulas at the time of birth but because I had them in the past they told me I shouldnt deliver vaginally.

I do know of a woman on another board that insists on a vaginal delivery, even with her history of fistulas. She wants to have a home birth. She did her research and chose to go that route. I dont think she is crazy. Birth is very important to some women and I respect that. Besides not all women tear during delivery right?
 
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Interesting. Yeah, after I watched the video in the link you posted I wondered if C-section would be recommended for me since I have had history of fistulas in my ileum. Wasn't sure if it was only for people with fistulas in the vaginal and/or anal regions only or what.

Though I'm so tiny with barely any hips, I wonder if I'd be able to give birth naturally anyway! ;)
 
pregnancy

Hi- My pregnancy story is this:

I was in remission for 5 years before first child. I was on 6MP but stopped taking it to get pregnant. I had no trouble getting pregnant either time-did miscarry in between children though-Crohn's did great during both pregnancy's-could eat whatever I wanted-the doc says it's because of the hormones-Thank You! But with both pregnancy's, right about the four month after birth mark I would start to have symptoms. I quit breastfeeding and started taking my meds again. My crohn's did get worse after having children-but TOTALLY worth it!

Actually after the second child I tried going to a naturopath and long story short I think I made things worse by prolonging getting on drugs.

My story is happy though. Two beautiful healthy children- had resection surgery in February and haven't felt this good in years. I think I'm done having children and focusing on being healthy for my kids. I hope you have an easy conception, pregnancy and birth. Good Luck!
 
Clomid and hormones

Hi everyone,
Wondering if you could help. I want to have children and we have been trying for about 3 years. It's been 7 months since i've been diagnosed with crohn's. Have been on pentasa for about 3 months and feel great. The only one thing is annoying is that i still have a little blood in my stool. This has been happening for 7 months. After 7 years of horrible stomach pain and D and C. So i have inflamation in the large bowel and small ulcers. I'm going for a colonoscopy in Sept.
I have been to a OBGYN and had tests. They found that my hormone levels drop instead of rise around ovulation at times. So sometimes I ovulate and sometimes I don't. Doc said it's proberbly around 1/2 and 1/2.
So he wants me to start taking clomid to assist with ovulation. I'm worried it might cause flare ups. I usually get D around my periods and stomach gets a little funny. Nothing I can't handle though. It is still much better then ever before.
My GI said she is one of the healthiest patients she has. So does this mean I'm in remission even though I still have a little blood?
Oh too confusing. I'm scared to take clomid incase it makes me flare! ARRGGHH help.
I'm over waiting and am thinking about going for it and taking clomid.
Suggestions PLEASE
 
Maybe this is a silly question, but did you discuss clomid with your GI and how it may or may not affect your Crohn's? If you get the okay to take it then I say go for it! Hope it works :)
 

Silvermoon

Moderator
I was diagnosed with Crohn's when I was prepubescent, and I am not sure if that, or all the meds I have been on over the years, or just my dumba** luck, lol, but my husband and I never really used any birth control of any type (we have been married over 12 years now), and I have never gotten pregnant. So I would recommend, if you are trying, do what you can to get it done, or if you are younger with this disease, and think you might want to have children, the earlier the better. I don't think anyone honestly knows what happens to a woman's "plumbing" once she has been on all these different meds... lol.

A side note about labour and delivery once you DO get preggers: my internalist and I were discussing giving birth when I was still quite young (about 19 or so), and I remember her telling me even then, that even if you did not have any fistulas or fissures and had Crohn's, she would recommend having babies by C-section, as the risk of any tears becoming a problem or not healing properly could be a problem. That being said, I live in Canada where our health care isn't so expensive and we don't have to pay for every little thing. lol :redface:

I do wish you all the best, and hope you do get to enjoy the miracle of giving life. :)
 
Hoping to reach remission soon so the husband and I can realistically start talking about having a family :) I've found this thread quite helpful for when we reach that point!
 
Hi guys thanks heaps. Yes i have spoken to GI and she has said to go ahead. Whatever the OBGYN wants me to do is fine. It's hard because you feel like you are stuck between a rock and a hard place. We really want kids but I don't want to get sicker. But thanks so much for the tips! I have seen that c-sections are the way to go for crohn's. I live in Australia so much of that is covered by the public or private system.
 
cins- I say go for it! I'm over the worrying about everything. Modern medicine is great! What's the worse that can happen. They take you off the drug if you get worse. Have babies! BTW-I had both my children vaginally.
 
I had a baby

I had a baby almost 9 years ago. I've had Crohn's since 1987. I had a wonderful pregnancy. I felt the best when I was pregnant. I have to admit I wasn't on any meds at the time. I haven't been for some time because the ileostomy I had done at age 15 put me into surgical remission. I had always wanted children and was scared that I wouldn't be able to have any because the docs had told me that they weren't sure I would have any because there was such a mess inside me. My organs were all stuck together. So when I got pregnant I was very ecstatic. My daughter did come out 5 weeks premature. But besides a little jaundice she was perfectly fine and went home with me two days later. I think everyone's situation is different and you will always have to do what is right with you. Getting you stable is most important because if you aren't healthy you can't really expect to carry a healthy baby. Talk to your doctor. Do some research and make sure you have a good support system because I didn't and all the stress I went through didn't help. The doctors told me that my daughter was most likely born 5 weeks premature because of that stress. I hope this helps at all.
 

Dexky

To save time...Ask Dusty!
I've read so many stories about women w/ crohn's and colitis who during preg never felt so good. Makes me wonder if there's any research done on this phenom as to possible treatments? Anyone know?

Mark
 
I've read so many stories about women w/ crohn's and colitis who during preg never felt so good. Makes me wonder if there's any research done on this phenom as to possible treatments? Anyone know?

Mark

I don't really know the specifics, but a while back I had read that during pregnancy you produce a certain hormone, and that hormone may be related to making the pregnant woman's Crohn's disease better for the time being. I'll go see if I can find anything on it and will let you know, but I do remember hearing about a certain hormone. Sorry that's kind of vague.
 
Question for those who've been pregnant...did any of you consult with a high risk OB? I had never thought about it until i watched that video Lydia posted.

Also, did any of you have to have C-sections due to fistulas or other Crohn's related reasons?
I had a C-section because of my fistulas. I will tell you that for me, pregnancy seemed to make my fistulas worse. I had several new ones form and one of them opens up into my vagina (sorry if I'm being too graphic for you) and that totally freaked me out.. It has never healed but it's never gotten really bad, either.. my daughter is 3 now.

I thought having a C-section and not pushing would take care of the fistula problem but I think carrying a full-term baby puts a lot of pressure "down there" even if you don't deliver naturally.
 
Yeah, I understand, Sidders. :) My fistulas are located near my ileum though. As far as I know, I don't have any "down there." ;) So, I wasn't sure if anyone with fistulas in their ileum or colon was recommended to have C-section.

I can understand why someone with vaginal or perianal fistulas would want to deliver by C-section, but wasn't sure if it posed the same risk for other fistulas.
 
I was told I can't have children as I am high risk.They don't know where my organs are placed for C-Section and vaginal I can not deliver as I have a small pelvic area.We recently thought I was pregnant but came to find out I was not.So now the doctors are pushing even more on my husband having a vasectomy.That makes me upset because if something happens to me I want him to be able to remarry and have children if he wants.We did however adopt our daughter from a friend of mine from High school so we are looking into doing that again.I guess in other words its not just meds you have to be concerned about but if you have had numerous surgeries
 
well because the universe is out of control...I am pregnant. Total accident. Now I am faced with the HARDEST decision of my life probably. I am going to see my doc tomorrow. I'm still on Imuran now. Still loosing my hair by the gobs.

Scared!
 
My thoughts are with you, RedApple :)

Don't let the fear get to you. Trust your doctors to take care of you! There have been people who have had healthy babies while on medications and off of it. It's normal to feel anxious though, just don't let it consume you. I hope the doctor is able to calm some of your fears tomorrow. Best of luck to you!
 
My thoughts are with you, RedApple :)

Don't let the fear get to you. Trust your doctors to take care of you! There have been people who have had healthy babies while on medications and off of it. It's normal to feel anxious though, just don't let it consume you. I hope the doctor is able to calm some of your fears tomorrow. Best of luck to you!
Thanks
 

Lisa

Adminstrator
I'm with Marisa on this.....

When I found out I was pregnant, there were a LOT of fears.....especially since I had been on medications for most of my pregnancy......but, everything turned out OK!.....

I have to admit, the c-section was a nice 'option'.....got to schedule Tori's birthday, no labor.....extra attention from hubby/family.....

If I had to do it all again- I would - I LOVE my little Peanut! (who isn't quite so little any more! lol)
 
Thanks everyone. I really do not take medications lightly (not that people who have had babies with meds do - totally not what I'm saying). I am not well. I am healing from being really sick. I am nutritionally depleted. I am on a serious drug that can pass to the fetus.

I appreciate hearing about success stories. If I didn't have a success, and all signs point to "what if"....I wouldn't be able to live with that.

All in all...the whole situation of carrying a baby doesn't add up to me. The crazy thing is that if this happened a few months ago (before I got sick) I would be thrilled! Or even a year from now, once I had a chance to heal. Now it's all wrong.
 

Lisa

Adminstrator
You know your body best - AND you need to take care of YOURSELF first - because if you don't, that doesn't do any good to a baby or the rest of your family.

Take heard and comfort that you make decisions that are for the best of everyone involved - if you need to talk, please feel free to send me a message....I hear where you are coming from!
 
I have had opposite, both times breastfeeding has put me in a wonderful remmision not even needing any meds!! fed both for 2 years, but when stopped came crashing down with the most awful flare-ups! was worth it though having two years disease free, eat what I wanted, not worry about having an accident in public!!! everyone is different but i believe that in most cases pregnancy and breastfeeding help with symptoms
 
I got pregnant @June 2004 - after being hospitalized for a flare, was feeling better.....didn't realize the drugs I got in the hosp. probably messed up with birth control! ....... Was feeling VERY good for the first 5 1/2 months - in fact, didn't even know I was pregnant!!!!!.......I had lost weight when sick, so a slight gain was no big deal - didn't show, no morning sickness etc.......I was on 6MP at the time too.......continued that during the pregnancy, had a scheduled c-section (recto-vaginal and peri-anal fistulas)and my daughter was born March 8, 2005.....healthy but a peanut at just over 6 lbs.....

After I had her I was off drugs for @3 months, did breast feed but then started to flare and had the issues with the fistulas.....stopped breast feeding and started Remicade.......been doing pretty well since then.

No adverse effects seen in my daughter - she is healthy, happy, smart (too much for her own good sometimes! lol).......my big hope is she doesn't have any issues as she gets older with her digestive system.....

Oh - and I was 34 when I got pregnant.....
I have had opposite, both times breastfeeding has put me in a wonderful remmision not even needing any meds!! fed both for 2 years, but when stopped came crashing down with the most awful flare-ups! was worth it though having two years disease free, eat what I wanted, not worry about having an accident in public!!! everyone is different but i believe that in most cases pregnancy and breastfeeding help with symptoms
 
Red,

Before making any decisions, definitely talk to your GI, Gyn, and primary doctor. Make sure they all talk together so they are on the same page BEFORE you make a drastic decision.

There are many women who are on certain Crohn's medications that some women were fearful to be on who had healthy pregnancies because they were followed closely by all of these physicians including a high risk Ob/Gyn. I use to work as a secretary for an Ob/Gyn dept. at a local hospital where I lived. Nothing is impossible because of the advancements in medicine we have compared to what we had say 20 yrs. ago. Better equipment to dx problems, better treatments, better medications to treat side effects, etc.

Seriously, have all not just 1 MD look at your medical history. You are NOT ALONE in having a high risk pregnancy. Most pregnancies are not life or death unless there's a health risk that causes a life or death situation to the mother and or child. Hang in there and know that you are not alone. Take care and we are thinking about you. ~Gutless Wonderwoman
 
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Hi there

I was doing some research on Crohns and pregnancy and read recently that alot of women go into remission whilst pregnant. This is due to the fact that your immune system shuts down so your body doesn't reject the feotus. So your body is naturally doing what the immunosuppressant medication does.
 
I was diagnosed with CD when I was 5 weeks pregnant...went on Asacol right away and prednisone when I was 13 weeks pregnant. The second was an 'accident' if you can say it that way. My first was only 9 months old and I was planning to start Remicade...but didn't. When I was 20 weeks pregnant I started prednisone again. I had 2 healthy children...a boy and a girl!

I know that it can be scary and I'm still worried about treatment etc. as we would like to have more children someday. It's hard because you just want to live your life and not have a disease control. I hope that everything will turn out well for you.
 
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