Healthy Mom=Healthy Baby

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Healthy mom equals healthy baby. This was the clear message from an educational forum on the treament of autoimmune diseases during pregnancy. Many of the medications used for autoimmune conditions such as inflammatory arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and psoriasis can be safely given during pregnancy.

The greatest risk to the baby is to have the mom have a flare of her disease during pregnancy. Family planning is important to ensure a safe treatment plan is in place and any medications deemed unsafe are stopped prior to becoming pregnant. Being in low disease activity, if not remission, increases the success of the pregnancy and increases fertility.

Biologic medications are composed of protein and cannot cross the placenta until late in the second trimester. One particular biologic medication doesn’t cross the placenta at any time during pregnancy. Therefore, some women will continue a biologic throughout their pregnancy while others may stop by the third trimester.

Each woman’s treatment regimen must be individually assessed, so start the dialogue early if family planning is in your future.

Carolyn Whiskin is the Pharmacy Manager for Charlton Health.  Carolyn specializes in the treatment of autoimmune diseases, pharmaceutical compounding, women’s health, pain and smoking cessation. Carolyn has won provincial and national awards for her commitment to patient care and public service.

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