Does Lupus Flare During Pregnancy?

Pregnancy can be a stressful time and causes extra work for the body. This may cause your lupus symptoms and flares to arise, causing complications for your pregnancy. Coping with lupus is the same during pregnancy as it is every other day of your life. To ensure you have a successful pregnancy, take the steps necessary to minimize your lupus activity and ensure the time is right for you or your partner to become pregnant.

Lupus Status Before Pregnancy

One of the most important steps to ensure there will be no complications due to your lupus during birth is to meet with your doctor before becoming pregnant to get the status of your lupus disease. Talk with your rheumatologist to determine if your lupus is in remission or well under control. This will help you determine if there is a greater chance to experience lupus flares during pregnancy and birth. Also, becoming pregnant with lupus can cause miscarriage and result in complications for the mother. Lupus pregnancy has a 10% risk of resulting in miscarriage or complications and a 30% risk of premature birth.

Pregnancy Risks from Lupus

The risks associate with pregnancy are the same for lupus patients as any other pregnancy. Some women may experience lupus flares due to the increased stress and hormones affecting the body. Mild flares can usually be controlled with corticosteroids. Moderate to severe flares can cause complications for the pregnancy and can possibly result in an unexpected miscarriage, stillbirth or premature birth.

Talk to your Obstetrician About your Lupus

Another important step during your pregnancy is to keep your obstetrician informed about your lupus and any symptoms you may be feeling. You should have regular discussions, including preconception discussions of the risks, including early pregnancy complications and miscarriage. There are mid-pregnancy issues regarding fetal death, lupus flares and other complications, as well as postpartum issues that include medications and breast-feeding. Keep an open line of communication with you obstetrician at all times!

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