Remicade and Pregnancy?

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legendaryglimmer
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 3/18/2008 9:38 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi there -- I am getting different opinions about the safety of Remicade and pregnancy.  My doctor wants to start me on Remicade ASAP for a recent flare-up that included a hospital stay, an absess and a fistula.  Trouble is my husband and i had just decided to try to get pregnant (I'm getting old so there is no time to waste).  My GI says it's safe during pregnancy. A second opinion I received said he would not recommend it.
 
What do you guys hear?  Also, anyone out there get pregnant while on Remicade? Or experience a flare-up while pregnant?  I'd love to hear about your experiences...

****

Diagnosed with CD in 1997 following appendectomy. One 7-day hospitalization for flare-up, 12/2007 - still recovering!  On 9mg Entocort, fish oil, probiotics, multi-vitamin.  Low fiber diet.


Chasity102304
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 165
   Posted 3/19/2008 6:12 AM (GMT -7)   
I had my first major flare while pregnant and undiagnosed (suffering for 10+ years with no dx) with my daughter 2 and 1/2 years ago. It was AWFUL!! Along with the pain from the flare and possible obstruction, I had the worry of taking pain meds and losing weight while pregnant. I was in the hospital 6 times during the 39 weeks and I lost 27 lbs total. My daughter was born healthy with no complications.
 
Remicade is the only drug that has worked for me thus far and after a resection surgery in July 07 I went back on it as a maintenance med. I am currently 14 weeks pregnant with our second child. My GI was fine with me taking the remicade and feels it is as safe as any other med during pregnancy. My OB/GYN wasn't as excited about it, but also feels like if you have to take it, you have to take it. There are varying opinions and experiences on this forum about when you should start and stop the remicade during pregnancy. I know that my OB/GYN and GI don't feel that I need to stop taking it at any time (OB stated that if it was going to casue issues it would do it within the first 12 weeks) but I have seen posts where women have been taken off the remicade at 30-32 weeks because the dr feels it may cross the placenta. There is little evidence of any effects at this point because no official studies have been done since it is a FDA category C drug. I think eventually it will become Cat. B (which would mean safe in pregnancy) but remicade has only been FDA approved since 1998 I think so it's new still.
 
You and your husband have to do what you feel is right for you. Risking a flare during pregnancy could be potenially harmful to you and the baby. Pregnancy is stressful time and adding the stress from a flare for me was unbareable!!!! If you trust your dr(s), then go with what they say. I have full faith in my GI and if he had told me it wasn't an option, then I wouldn't have gotten pregnant. I feel like you have to do what's best for you and each person is different. GOODLUCK!!
 
PS-there are several other posts about remicade and pregnancy on here. If you do a search you can go back and see what others have said as well.
Fibromyalgia DX March 2003
Crohn's DX Jan 2006 (Symptoms since 96-Misdiagnosed as "female" problems-Major flare during pregnancy in 05 which lead to DX)
1st resection July 2007
Currently on Remicade/8 weeks


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 3/19/2008 6:29 AM (GMT -7)   
Stef17 has had two babies while on Remicade. There have been others who were on 6mp who had successful pregnancies and births too.
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 32 years.  Currently on Asacol, Prilosec 60 mg, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain and Calcium.  Resections in 2002 and 2005.  Recently diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and doing tests to see if I have Inflammatory Arthritis or AS.


legendaryglimmer
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 3/19/2008 7:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks so much CHastity102304~  I'm off to see my GI right now, and hearing your experience really helps.  i'll search for other posts dealing with this issue and general experiences during pregnancy.  Of course once we decided to get pregnant, the worst flare-up I've had in 10 years arrives!  UG.

****

Diagnosed with CD in 1997 following appendectomy. One 7-day hospitalization for flare-up, 12/2007 - still recovering!  On 9mg Entocort, fish oil, probiotics, multi-vitamin.  Low fiber diet.


Stef17
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1811
   Posted 3/19/2008 8:21 AM (GMT -7)   
I've had two perfectly healthy remicade babies. Click on my username and email me if you want. I'll give you the whole spiel. Having gone through it twice, I would say that I agree with your GI - that remicade is safe to take while pregnant and you should not worry. It never hurts to get a 2nd opinion like you did, but did that doctor say why (s)he thinks it's not safe? What data did (s)he use to support the decision? Because I have not once heard of any complications/abnormalities/birth defects from any women who took remicade while pregnant. Anyway, email me if you'd like. I'm happy to share my experiences if it'll help.

Stef

EmmyT
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 75
   Posted 3/19/2008 9:20 AM (GMT -7)   

Stef-

 I have a separate question for you. Did you have trouble getting pregnant after your miscarriage? I seem to have irregular cycles for the first time ever-with like 2 day AF and not much blood. I got pregnant so easy last time and wondered if it was Crohns or miscarriage related. Thanks.


angela42
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 30
   Posted 3/19/2008 3:37 PM (GMT -7)   
I had my first infusion during my early pregnancy (before I knew), baby was completely fine...healthy boy 8.6 lbs!
 
Alas, I was unable to continue w/Remicade as I had an allergic reaction (unrelated to the pg). 
 
My Crohn's stayed about the same during my pg...no major flares, but I did have a doozy of a flare after my son was born.....it didn't resolve until my gastro got me into the Humira study...best thing ever!
 
I was very fortunate that during my pg, my Crohn's was almost a non-event, my biggest concern was getting the proper nutrition which is a bit trickier w/the Crohns..
 
Best of luck!
 
Diagnosed at 13, am now 36. Bowel resection at 17 and two additional surgeries following bowel obstructions.
Gave birth to a beautiful baby boy on 9-21-2005 after being on Remicade.


Roni
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 2480
   Posted 3/19/2008 8:59 PM (GMT -7)   
There haven't been that many women who have received remicade while pregnant, compared to other drugs.

Remicade is still a relatively new drug. There needs to be more studies, including long term effects.

Here's a link from The Mother Risk program with Sick Kids Toronto:

http://www.motherisk.org/prof/updatesDetail.jsp?content_id=726

legendaryglimmer
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 3/19/2008 9:33 PM (GMT -7)   

Stef - thanks for your reply. I'm going through your previous posts and finding a wealth of info.  My doctor's main reason against using remicade during a pregnancy is there are not enough studies yet, so the effects and outcomes are a bit unknown.  However the Doc that I got a second opinion from has treated women with remicade while they were pregnant and reports no problems.  I might just take you up on your offer to follow-up by email with any questions as I start going down this path...

THANKS so much.

Kel 


****

Diagnosed with CD in 1997 following appendectomy. One 7-day hospitalization for flare-up, 12/2007 - still recovering!  On 9mg Entocort, fish oil, probiotics, multi-vitamin.  Low fiber diet.


Stef17
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1811
   Posted 3/20/2008 8:54 AM (GMT -7)   
Please do email me if you'd like. I'm happy to share my experiences. Sometimes it helps to hear from someone who has been-there/done-that.

katz31
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 3/20/2008 10:25 AM (GMT -7)   
I have a healthy 15 mos old daughter and have been on remicade for almost 5 years now. I felt great during my pregnancy and am thinking about having another baby.  Stef17 was very encouraging for me when I asked similar questions 2 years ago. Best of luck.
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