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Aurora magazine

Rheumatic diseases: how to cope with a pregnancy?

For women suffering from rheumatic diseases, coping with a pregnancy is a big problem. Rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, arthrosis cause many doubts and fears. "Will I be able to take care of my son?" But above all: "The drugs I take will hurt him?" These are the fears that afflict 50% of women of child bearing age who suffer from these diseases. A number that can not be ignored.

The National Observatory on Women's and Gender Health (Onda) conducted a survey in 24 rheumatology centers in Italy. The survey involved 398 women aged between 18 and 55 with rheumatic diseases. A champion far from the common imaginary, which would like rheumatic diseases as a typical problem of old age.

In reality rheumatic diseases mainly affect women and appear at a young age. It is thought that female hormones play an important role in their development, making them a typical problem of fertile age. Also for this reason, pregnancy is a delicate moment for those suffering from rheumatic diseases. Gestation often influences the course of the disorder and, in the worst cases, can in turn be negatively affected. Angela Tincani, professor of rheumatology at the University of Brescia, is however optimistic.

According to Dr. Tincani, proper medical and obstetric management can facilitate gestation. However, it is necessary to program gestation at a time when the disease is in stable remission. In addition, medications compatible with the new conditions of the woman and the fetus must be chosen. The important thing is that the aspiring mother follows the indications of rheumatologist and gynecologist.