Lupus During Pregnancy
Everything you wanted to know about lupus during pregnancy, including how to keep you and baby healthy for all nine months.
What is lupus during pregnancy?
Lupus is an inflammatory disease -- it’s an autoimmune disease, meaning your immune system sometimes attacks your body’s healthy tissues.
What are the signs of lupus during pregnancy?
Lupus can show up in a variety of ways, depending on what parts of your body are affected. You may have fatigue, headaches, pain or swelling in your joints or face, a rash, sensitivity to light, hair loss, fever and maybe even other symptoms.
Are there any tests for lupus during pregnancy?
Yep. Since lupus is easy to confuse with some other conditions, your doc will make the diagnosis based on tests; blood testing, urine testing and/or a biopsy may be used to see if you have lupus.
How common is lupus during pregnancy?
We’re not sure, but we do know that 9 out of 10 adults with lupus are women ages 15 to 45 -- that’s right in childbearing territory.
How did I get lupus?
Causes of lupus are still being researched, but it may have something to do with genetics and hormones.
How will my lupus affect my baby?
While moms with lupus deliver healthy babies all the time, it’s important to know that patients with lupus or other autoimmune disorders are also at a higher risk of miscarrying. That's why proper treatment is so important for moms-to-be.
Luckily, studies have shown that pregnancy doesn't affect the long-term course of lupus, although flare-ups are more common after you deliver. It's also extremely unlikely that baby will be born with the disease, no matter how severe your own case. That said, it's best for you and baby if you can conceive when your disease is in a quiet period (if it's at all possible to plan this). Make sure to let your OB know you have lupus so she can get in touch with your regular doctor, if need be. It's good if both doctors are on the same page to ensure both you and baby stay as healthy as possible throughout your pregnancy.