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01-12-2011, 04:14 PM   #1
xJillx
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Questions from a Worried Newbie Crohnie

My husband and I always joke with each passing wedding anniversay that we re-upped our "five year plan" (Our "five year plan" when we got married was to have kids after our 5th anniversary...but we keep pushing it back). We love to travel and we both agree we aren't ready. But, of course, as soon as I am diagnoised with Crohn's disease, I am starting to develop a baby bug! It certainly doesn't help that it seems like everyone around me is pregnant! I know 6 girls who are due this summer. Anyways, I know I have to get well first, and I probably wouldn't consider starting a family for at least another year. But I have some serious questions that are really on my mind. Can you help answer them?

1. I know everyone's symptoms and pregnancies are different, but is it true the better you feel when you get pregnant, the better chance you will feel good during the 9 months?

2. Is it true woman with Crohn's should have a C-section? Why is this?

3. For those who have had children, how did you feel after giving birth? Do things get worse/flare ups?

4. Again a question for those who have children, has your child(ren) been diagniosed with Crohn's? I have read it's a very low chance (I believe I read 9% chance to be exact) for offspring to inherit CD, but it is still a major concern of mine.

Thank you in advance for reading - I really appreciate it!
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Diagnosis of Crohn's Disease Retracted - October 2011

I am still sick and so confused...
01-12-2011, 04:40 PM   #2
Astra
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Hiya Jill

I say go for it!
My experience was, both my pregnancies were wonderful, no symptoms, they were a breeze! I felt better during the 2 pregnancies than I've ever felt! I had them both naturally and was fine afterwards, I breastfed both of them too. My daughter is 19 and she took forever to come out, lazy cow! and my son is 16, and I sneezed him out!
and neither of them have an IBD, very robust healthy kids!
Actually, no-one in my entire family, both sides, cousins, etc have an IBD.
Happy baby making Jill!
xxxx
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01-12-2011, 05:01 PM   #3
Manzyb
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Hey there!

Getting pregnant and having a baby is scary, and even scarier with this disease!!
I am pregnant with my first and was not in remission when I got pregnant. I'm still not in remission, and have had sort of a rough go, but nothing that endangered the baby. I have been fairly sick with vomiting and diarrhea, but its honestly not much worse than before I was pregnant.


the last two questions I can't help you with b/c I haven't had a baby yet.

I was so leary about getting pregnant at first, and its been a little rough, but I am carrying a very very healthy baby and I am just so excited about it now!
Some women do feel great when they get pregnant. I was hoping I would go into remission as I've heard of that a lot, but hasn't happened yet and I'm just about 26 weeks along.

My OB does not think I need to do a C-section. He doesn't believe in doing them unless absolutely neccessary. However, I do have fistulating disease, so we may go in the way of a c-section, because I really don't want to risk tearing and getting fistulas and things in my nether regions. Yikes.
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01-12-2011, 06:16 PM   #4
Lydia
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I found this video/article to be very helpful.
http://crohnstoday.com/the-impact-of...ancy/#more-147

I was in remission the first time I got pregnant. I had a wonderful uneventful pregnant. I loved being pregnant and it was the best I felt in my entire life. I really was glowing and vibrant the entire time.

You should join me in my TTC (Trying to conceive thread) as I am also trying to get pregnant with baby #2.
01-12-2011, 06:18 PM   #5
Lydia
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Hey there!

Getting pregnant and having a baby is scary, and even scarier with this disease!!
I am pregnant with my first and was not in remission when I got pregnant. I'm still not in remission, and have had sort of a rough go, but nothing that endangered the baby. I have been fairly sick with vomiting and diarrhea, but its honestly not much worse than before I was pregnant.


the last two questions I can't help you with b/c I haven't had a baby yet.

I was so leary about getting pregnant at first, and its been a little rough, but I am carrying a very very healthy baby and I am just so excited about it now!
Some women do feel great when they get pregnant. I was hoping I would go into remission as I've heard of that a lot, but hasn't happened yet and I'm just about 26 weeks along.

My OB does not think I need to do a C-section. He doesn't believe in doing them unless absolutely neccessary. However, I do have fistulating disease, so we may go in the way of a c-section, because I really don't want to risk tearing and getting fistulas and things in my nether regions. Yikes.
I had a c-section with my first for the same reason. While everything went well I dont think I will have a c-section the next time around. I really feel something was missing from my birth experience. But thats just me. I figure I can get a fistula with out giving birth, its a risk I have the rest of my life c-section or not. There is a risk for an abdominal fistula with a c-section too.
01-12-2011, 09:28 PM   #6
Domsmom
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Hi there! Welcome!

I became pregnant with baby number one a few weeks before I was diagnosed with crohn's. I took asacol, prednisone, and pentasa at some point during that pregnancy. Number 2 was a surprise... My son was only 9 months old at the time. I started prednisone when I was 20 weeks. Both of my pregnancies were very easy, but I was in a mild flare through both of them. I had a vaginal birth with both. I was able to get off of all meeds shortly after my son was born. I nursed both children. They are still both too young to have crohn's.

I would suggest seeing a good high risk ob to follow you through your pregnancy and to increase your GI visits.

Go for it and enjoy! Children are such a joy and a blessing...don't let crohn's take that from you.

If you have any other concerns , I'd be happy to try to answer them
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01-13-2011, 01:43 AM   #7
AndiGirl
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Best of luck! Try not to worry. I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease in 2005. I had a couple second trimester losses, but that was attributed to something other than the Crohn's. I gave birth to a beautiful, healthy baby girl in March of 2010. I took Pentasa and one round of Prednisone during pregnancy, otherwise I felt great. I delivered vaginally without any problems. I'll also mention that I was 37 when I gave birth to my daughter.
01-13-2011, 10:31 AM   #8
Becky
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My first preg. wsa before diagnosis, though I had symptoms. IT was a great preg. and i felt great. Second was about a year after diag. I had a little flare during 2nd trimester and took entocort for about 10wks. I was also on remicade throughout. I have had issues since havine #2. I do not think it is b/c of the pregnancy though. Just the disease getting worse.
My boys are only 5 &2 but so far no signs of IBD.
oh I had vaginal birth for both.

Good Luck!!!
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01-13-2011, 10:47 AM   #9
xJillx
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Thanks, ladies, for all of your responses and encouragement. I am still trying to process the fact that I have CD, let alone how it will affect my future children. It's a lot to digest (no pun intended). I was scared of pregnancy and giving birth before I was diagnosed! Now I am a bit terrified. However, my husband and I are not completely ready to start a family, but we do expect to in another year or so. So hopefully by then, I will be more mentally and physically prepared. Again, I really appreciate all of the feedback - this forum is soooo helpful!
01-14-2011, 12:26 PM   #10
deedee
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I'm in a very similar situation. I was also dx'd in July, and my husband and I are also thinking about having kids within the next few years (yikes!)

It's really daunting, especially since I'm on 6MP and Remicade right now and do NOT want to go off either unless I have to!

To answer your C-section question, while it varies from person to person, I believe the general guideline is that if you've had fistula problems in the rectal area, you shouldn't deliver vaginally. You're at a much higher risk for more fistulas and other complications. But on the other hand, if you have a lot of previous abdominal surgeries, a vaginal delivery is the way to go. My GI said, before I brought up the topic of pregnancy/kids, "When you have kids, you are NOT delivering vaginally. If anyone ever tries to tell you otherwise, have them call me." lol!

Good luck, maybe we'll be TTC buddies down the road!

BTW, I grew up in Yardley :-)
01-14-2011, 12:55 PM   #11
xJillx
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To answer your C-section question, while it varies from person to person, I believe the general guideline is that if you've had fistula problems in the rectal area, you shouldn't deliver vaginally.
That is the conclusion I am starting to draw. However, though you may have not had an issue with fistulas before, would delivering vaginally change that? My friend (no health issues) just had her first in September and it did a number on her tushy! She developed horrible hemorrhoids and she is still suffering from them.

This is one of my biggest concerns (after the well being of my future baby) - will being pregnant and delivering a child worsen my condition??
01-14-2011, 12:59 PM   #12
Domsmom
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I think that hemorrhoids are almost guaranteed when you deliver vaginally. I do think that they are a better option than surgery though...imo. Also, a lot of people with Crohn's already have them, so what a few more
01-15-2011, 06:55 AM   #13
deedee
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That is the conclusion I am starting to draw. However, though you may have not had an issue with fistulas before, would delivering vaginally change that? My friend (no health issues) just had her first in September and it did a number on her tushy! She developed horrible hemorrhoids and she is still suffering from them.

This is one of my biggest concerns (after the well being of my future baby) - will being pregnant and delivering a child worsen my condition??
I think that usually when you get pregnant, they say 1/3 of people get worse, 1/3 get better, and 1/3 stay the same. My dr told me that the most important thing during pregnancy is that the mom feels good, she said if the mom feels good, the baby feels good!

In terms of delivery, I think as a Crohn's patient there's always a risk of fistulas/fissures. But if you've already had problems with them, then you're at an increased risk, I think, so that's why they recommend a c-section right away. My guess is that if you are worried about fistulas/butt problems after delivery, you will be able to get an elective c-section based on that if that's what you want.

But like pp said, I think hemorrhoids are a pretty common problem after vaginal delivery, regardless of whether you have Crohn's or not! It's from the pushing, just like you can get hemorrhoids from being really constipated.
01-15-2011, 09:47 AM   #14
xJillx
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I think that usually when you get pregnant, they say 1/3 of people get worse, 1/3 get better, and 1/3 stay the same.
Well, I guess that is pretty good. I certainly like the idea that there is a possibility I could even get a little better. I will just have to think positive and not focus on the 1/3 of a chance I'll get worse. I appreciate the stats!
01-15-2011, 07:07 PM   #15
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Well, I guess that is pretty good. I certainly like the idea that there is a possibility I could even get a little better. I will just have to think positive and not focus on the 1/3 of a chance I'll get worse. I appreciate the stats!
Unless you are in remission when the pregnancy starts. Then its almost guaranteed you will stay that way the whole time.
01-16-2011, 09:56 AM   #16
deedee
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Unless you are in remission when the pregnancy starts. Then its almost guaranteed you will stay that way the whole time.
really? awesome! I didn't know that, thanks!
01-16-2011, 10:37 AM   #17
Lydia
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really? awesome! I didn't know that, thanks!
This is what my GI told me. He says the 1/3 rule applies only if you have any active disease. Its not to say that you cant flare when pregnant if you are in remission but the chances are much smaller than 1/3.
01-16-2011, 11:40 PM   #18
AndiGirl
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I felt terrific during pregnancy. I had VERY minor CD symptoms. About a month after I gave birth, my symptoms came back with vengence. It really is different for everybody. Mine is off and on and it's been almost a year since I've had my daughter.
01-17-2011, 12:05 AM   #19
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My research nurse (a very educated lady I may add who works for one of the top gastros in North America) told me that the risk is higher that a female will get Crohn's. So if you have a girl its 17% higher. Or so she told me. I really hope the stars are in your favor and baby doesnt have it. The good news? If baby does, you will know how to deal better.
01-17-2011, 02:58 PM   #20
xJillx
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I felt terrific during pregnancy. I had VERY minor CD symptoms. About a month after I gave birth, my symptoms came back with vengence. It really is different for everybody. Mine is off and on and it's been almost a year since I've had my daughter.
Compared to many on the forum, I would consider my symptoms minor, as well. That is why I am so concerned with how pregnancy will affect my disease. I want my symptoms to remain minor. But I know there is no guarantee and I want children one day, so it is a risk I will have to take. I guess I was secretly hoping for dozens of women to tell me it didn't affect them in the least which would make me feel better and less worried. I am shameless...
02-20-2011, 06:05 PM   #21
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Hi there I have 2 healthy children aged 9 and 12, I had my first naturally but my second was a c section as with my first i developed a fistula from the pushing. I was the best I have ever been during my pregnancies however it did get worse after each one,( but it prob would have done anyway) It would kill me if either of them developed CD but they live a healthy lifstyle and I breastfed them both for 7 months( i did hear to lower the risk to breastfed for at least 6 months) hope this helps
02-21-2011, 06:07 PM   #22
xJillx
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Thanks, Christie, for the insight. Lydia also recently told me that breastfeeding reduces the risk of CD; I am so thankful you ladies shared this important tip! Also, I am so happy to hear your children are healthy. But, how long after did you flare up after giving birth and what did you need to do to get it under control?
02-21-2011, 09:00 PM   #23
AndiGirl
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I got my first flare up two months after giving birth to my daughter. I had to go on Prednisone and Flagyl. After that my flare-ups were minor and further apart.
02-22-2011, 03:50 PM   #24
Christie
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with my first I had a flare up when my daughter was about a year old, I had to have a resection and go on Prednisilone with my second she was about the same and went on pred again, I have had more flareups since and have tried lots of different things (will never go on Prednisilone again ) I am just waiting to start infliximab, i am very lucky that I have a good husband and a brill family, my kids are not even bothered now when I go in hospital as they go stay with their grandparents (im glad it dosnt upset them)
02-22-2011, 03:52 PM   #25
Christie
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dont know how true this is but was told (cant remember who by) that if pregnant with a girl yr crohns isnt as bad as if pregnant with a boy! has anyone else heard this?
02-22-2011, 04:16 PM   #26
xJillx
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dont know how true this is but was told (cant remember who by) that if pregnant with a girl yr crohns isnt as bad as if pregnant with a boy! has anyone else heard this?
I haven't heard that. That is interesting, though.

So, would you say your Crohn's progressed due to your pregnancies?
02-22-2011, 04:41 PM   #27
Christie
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I think it prob would have anyway and if I had my time again I would still have children, I wouldnt have another one now though as it is worse than when I was younger
02-23-2011, 02:15 AM   #28
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My husband and I are still contemplating having another child. I was pregnant three times, and they were all girls. My daughter Elizabeth who will be one next month, is the only one that I was able to carry to term. My Crohns seems to be about the same as before I had my daughter.
02-23-2011, 10:45 AM   #29
xJillx
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I was pregnant three times, and they were all girls. My daughter Elizabeth who will be one next month, is the only one that I was able to carry to term.

My Crohns seems to be about the same as before I had my daughter.
I am sorry to hear about the prenancies you weren't able to carry to term. Did doctors think it was due to your CD? However, it is wonderful you have a little girl! I love the name Elizabeth - it's my #1 choice if I have a girl. I would like to call her Libby for short.

Also, I am happy to hear that your CD didn't seem to progress. I hope that will be the case for me, too! Thanks for giving me a little hope.
02-23-2011, 04:15 PM   #30
AndiGirl
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I'm sending some baby dust your way Jill. If you take care of yourself and have a good OB/GYN, you should do fine. Because I had lost two babies, have Crohn's Disease (chronic illness), and am over 35, my OB/GYN immediately referred me to a perinatologist. I was checking in with him all the time. I would highly recommend a good perinatologist to all high risk women. I was thankful to have one that was very familiar with Crohn's Disease.
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