Considerations for IBD and pregnancy
We understand a healthy pregnancy, and ultimately a healthy child, is the goal for any expectant mother. That’s why it’s important to control inflammation related to Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis to keep IBD as inactive as possible during pregnancy.
Importance of disease control
In order to optimize pregnancy outcomes for expectant mothers with IBD and their babies, it's important to control inflammation before pregnancy occurs. Women with active disease at the time of conception have a harder time controlling their IBD and achieving disease remission during pregnancy.
Talking with your doctor pre-pregnancy will ensure:
- You're on safe IBD medications. Some IBD medications should be avoided during parts (or the entirety) of pregnancy.
- You have all the necessary exams and tests to look for disease activity. Your physician may recommend a colonoscopy, blood work or other tests to look for signs of inflammation. Some of these studies cannot be performed once you become pregnant. You can have active inflammation even when you're feeling well, so it's important to undergo testing to be sure.
- Your medications are optimized. Depending on the results of your testing, your physician may recommend adjusting your dose, timing or type of medication to maximize your chances of a safe pregnancy. You may need to undergo further tests to evaluate disease activity after medication changes are made, so it's best to plan early.
What to know during pregnancy
- Disease activity at time of conception and throughout your pregnancy has health implications for both you and your baby. Work with your doctors to make sure your IBD is properly controlled before conception and during the entirety of your pregnancy. This will help ensure the best possible results for you and your baby during this special time.
- Despite the special considerations that need to be taken, with careful control of IBD inflammation, the majority of women are able to enjoy safe and healthy pregnancies and deliveries.
Trust your doctor
Having a strategy to control your IBD during pregnancy is critical for the health of both you and your unborn child. That's why it's important to find a doctor you trust. By working with a qualified doctor that you have faith in, you can confidently move through the stages of your pregnancy without worrying excessively that you're doing the right things.
Still looking for the right doctor?