New Study Finds Fertility Treatments to be Safe and Effective in Women with Lupus
A recent study found assisted reproductive therapy (ART) to be safe and effective for women with lupus who have stable disease activity. ART refers to any fertility treatments in which either eggs or embryos are handled, like in vitro fertilization (IVF). While ART techniques are well-developed and widely used in the general population, their effect on women with lupus remains unclear. In this study, nearly half (46.5%) of the women became pregnant through ART, and 83.3% of the women completed their pregnancy with a successful delivery.
Researchers looked at 142 women with lupus who had an ART procedure, including ovarian stimulation, IVF, and intrauterine insemination (IUI), among others. During a nearly 10-year period, there were 72 pregnancies recorded. Infertility (the inability to conceive) occurred in 66 women. Overall, 60 pregnancies ended successfully with the delivery of 65 babies.
The risk of negative events did not increase for women who had an ART procedure compared to women with a natural, planned pregnancy. In fact, women who got pregnant from ART had fewer negative outcomes than those with natural, unplanned pregnancies. Pregnancy complications included premature delivery (birth under 37 weeks gestational age) for 21 women (31.8%), gestational diabetes reported in 15 women (22.7%), and lupus flares experienced by 10 women (15.2%).
Learn more about planning for pregnancy with lupus.
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