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Medications and pregnancy

Hi all

I have read the posts however some are rather dated now. I am looking for some advice.. my partner has crohns and we would like to try for a baby.

His GI consultant was advising to stop azathioprine (also prescribed pentasa) I can not find any valid up to date research to support stopping meds for 3 months. I wouldn't want my partner to be at risk. Would really appreciate hearing from anyone who has experienced this.

I am a nurse and I have spoken to colleagues experienced in this field and again receive conflicting information.

Thank you :)


Super Moderator
Hi NinaN,

Tagging hawkeye. I pretty sure hawkeye was taking Imuran when he and his wife were planning a pregnancy and he remained on it.

Also controversial is the use of azathioprine or 6-MP by the male partner in couples planning a pregnancy. Here, too, extensive experience from transplantation medicine and in patients with rheumatic disorders and inflammatory bowel diseases who were treated with azathioprine or 6-MP prior to or during the period of conception does not reveal any increased risk for pregnancy complications or birth defects. As with women, however, there are also individual case reports in the scientific literature that suggest possible negative effects on pregnancy secondary to azathioprine or 6-MP. Here, too, data is based on a very small number of cases, which precludes statistical evaluation. European and American pharmaceutical regulatory agencies do not currently recommend that males being treated with azathioprine or 6-MP should discontinue therapy prior to a planned conception. Patients desiring maximum safety, however, can be advised to discontinue azathioprine three months prior to a planned conception. In the intervening period, males will produce sperm whose genetic material is not damaged by azathioprine. Over the past
years, we have followed a large number of women and men who have been treated with azathioprine before and during conception and pregnancy. There have been no reported instances of birth defects or pregnancy complica- tions that could be associated with this therapy.
From what I have read over the last few years the decision to stop medication for 3 months prior to conception is more a personal choice, after appropriate consultation, rather than a scientific one.