Pregnancy Planning and Management Intervention for Women with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
Women with lupus face unique challenges regarding family planning and pregnancy. In a recent study, researchers looked at the impact of pregnancy planning and medical readiness on reproductive outcomes for women with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). They found that the Healthy Outcomes in Pregnancy with SLE Through Education of Providers (HOP-STEP) Intervention provides high quality pregnancy planning support by routinely assessing pregnancy intention, reproductive goals, disease activity, and medications.
The HOP-STEP Intervention was created by researchers at Duke University School of Medicine to improve pregnancy planning and management of women with lupus by preparing healthcare providers and empowering patients to have better conversations. The intervention includes a discussion about pregnancy intention and contraception use, a guided handout, and personalized conversation between a woman and her rheumatologist about pregnancy prevention or planning.
A group of 151 women ages 18 - 44 in the Duke Lupus Registry who met American College of Rheumatology (ACR) or Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics (SLICC) criteria for SLE were studied. During each visit to the clinic, participants were asked whether she or her partner wanted to become pregnant in the next year and current contraceptive use. They were also asked questions about medication(s), SLE disease severity, and if they had routine care laboratory tests. Researchers found that the HOP-STEP Intervention improved adherence to ACR guidelines and contributed to high quality pregnancy planning support.
This study affirms that the HOP-STEP intervention is effective in a clinical setting for assessing family planning goals and receiving comprehensive reproductive care. Learn more about planning a pregnancy with lupus.
Interested in getting research like this straight to your inbox? Subscribe to our bimonthly Inside Lupus Research email for all the latest.