Can I have children? as periods are regular but have unprotected sex?

Hi, I am 22 years old and have SLE LUPUS. I have suffered very badly, specifically in september 2011 - december 2011. I was in hsopital for many months. I want to know if I am able to get pregnant. me and my boyfriend have UN-Protected sex but nothing happens, and I am getting regular periods. I dont think I can have children, but dont understand why I am having periods still? May sound like a silly question, but we all need advice and answers sometime in our lives! :-) hope somebody can help. thanks

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  • Don't know where you live but if in the UK best option is the Lupus Unit st St Thomas' hospital in London. They are APS specialist and have the best result for successful pregnancies I believe in the world.

  • I dont even want to get pregnant right now, but just want to know if I can or not. and yes I live in Devon. Uk. but London is a bit far. what does APS Mean? and If i did go to that hospital, I would have to be refered, wouldnt i?

  • What do you mean by unprotected sex? are you using the 'withdrawal method' or he just comes in you?

  • He comes in me. been with him 7 months, and we have sex about 3 times a week, apart from the week i am on my period

  • Well, it might take long time for some couples to get pregnant, even without SLE. The fact that you have regular periods is not an indicator of your fertility. However it is more difficult to get pregnant when you are in a lupus flare because the stress that the inflammation puts on the body is too high to additionally support the pregnancy.

    When you decide to get pregnant speak to the specialist becasue there are many precautions you need to take to make sure the baby and you will stay healthy during the pregnancy and after.

    ARe you taking any medications at the moment? It's important not to have unprotected sex when you are on certain medications that can cause defects of developing baby. Plus taking folic acid would be advised in case you actually get pregnant...

  • If you dont plan to be pregnant you should really be having protected sex. At least until you are ready for kids. I suffer terribly when pregnant due to my lupus. I have lost many pregnancies too (double figures) I have 2 boys now. This is a very serious topic & needs alot of thought. You need to take precautions for the sake of your own health!

  • Pregnancy and/or the rush of hormones released upon giving birth can send women into really serious, occasionally life-threatening lupus flares and, as Nicky says, the odds of miscarrying before term are also much increased which carries additonal grave risks to your physical and mental health. I understand your youth Gemzi but can't stress enough this really isn't a matter to be trifled with and only after much thought, planning and preferably with the help of the wonderful team at St. Thomas' Hospital in London. There are many things that need to be taken into account before you even consider trying for a baby - especially whatever medication you're taking, as Artemis says, because few medications used to treat lupus are compatible with pregnancy and would probably need to be stopped at least 3 months beforehand. If you go into a massive flare while pregnant or at any time after you give birth, who will look after you and/or care for your child? How will you manage financially - children are incredibly expensive to maintain? Can you provide the child with a stable home? Are you in a long-term stable, supportive, committed relationship? Bringing children into the world when you have all those things AND are fit and healthy is difficult enough. Don't expect to rely on long-term help from Social Services or DWP either - budgets are being cut all round and things set to become extremely hard for those who can't work. Sorry - didn't mean this to sound like a lecture - but all things that need to be given serious thought, especially when you were so ill last year. Please be responsible and start using contraception!

  • Yeah, I just want to know whether i ACTUALLY can get pregnant or not, i am NOT planning to have children now, but just want to know physically if i actually CAN have children, because nothing seems to happen, despite not using any contracepetion. I DO KNOW that I should know better at my age, but even more so with Lupus, but havent had much talk about it,and didnt think i could go on the PILL, with lupus. I am on strong medication, 1 of them being 10mg a week of methatraxate.

  • Gemzi, very likely you can get pregnant! Carrying the baby to term is another question. Methotrexate is a category X drug which means it is very likely to cause abnormal fetus development as well as miscarriages. Therefore it is likely that even if you get pregnant your pregnancy will be terminated soon after conception (= you will not even notice that you are pregnant).

    Lupus does not have an effect on the ability to get pregnant, but can make it difficult for a woman to keep the pregnancy.

    So to sum it up. We cannot now if you are fertile or not (only a doctor can tell you that after doing many tests on you and your partner). Lupus doesn't make you infertile. Your drugs can interfere with pregnancy at early stages or can lead to having a grossly deformed baby in future. Your body is stressed becasue of lupus and the drugs and this kind of stress can also make it more difficult to get pregnant (but not impossible!)

    If you don't want to get pregnant at least try withdrawal, better than nothing!

  • Most young people wonder that Gemzi (with or without lupus) but not worth falling preggers to find out. I personally don't think "the pill" is a good idea for any woman with lupus because we know the disease has hormonal links but there are several other methods of contraception, one of which may suit you quite well (especially if your boyfriend doesn't like wearing condoms - let's face it, not many do, lol). I preferred using "the cap" - might sound a little messy when they explain it to you but no bother really once you get used to it and you can't feel it's there. Hope you'll book an appt with your local family planning centre and get something sorted. Good luck! x

  • what is 'the cap' ? and yeah thanks everyone. I dont want to get pregnant and dont want a miscarriage or anything, so bf may have to use the withdraw method at least. my bf is very supportive, but me and him are under-estimating how serious this matter is, and we are going on with it, day to day, like nothing. sounds silly really but i do on the other hand have a appointment with my consultant and she will be given me the dreaded sex talk lol! and yeah, condoms ruin the moment, i think anyways, he feels the same too lol! does anybody know if you CAN go on the PILL, with SLE LUPUS? :)

  • Yes, you can go on the pill with Lupus. I've been on the pill for years until my antiphospholipid antibodies began to rise and I decided it's not worth to risk having a stroke. Progesteron only pill will be the safest option for you but you need to ask your consultant as I don't know how your bloodwork looks and what medicined you are taking at the moment. Adding additional hormones will certainly put more strain on your liver which would not be optimal.

    Just ask your doctor as they will be able to advise you better than any of us on the forums can...

    Rememeber: Methotrexate = mutant babies! and we don't want that!

  • Yes you can get pregnant, yes you can try pills. I am a hypersensitive & the pills I've tried (most) make me extremely poorly.

    When I said I got poorly when pregnant I was using gentle words. I'm guessing to the hormonal changes my so called MILD lupus gets out of control. To a point of it being life threatening. Unlucky for me it wasn't until 3 yrs ago was I diagnoised. Giving the answers that docs couldn't find while I was, what felt like dying while pregnant.

    Losing many pregnancies is heart breaking, mentally torturing.

    I believe if your partner is supportive he will wear a condom. Would you be happy to terminate a pregnancy due to your medication? This all takes planning & a team of consultants.

    My partner was heartbroken to see me suffer with pregnancies, allergies to pills, latex, coils....he decided to have a vesectomy. I was not happy with this but he was right, we had to eliminate any risk of putting my life at risk. I have 2 boys 12 & 4.

    Can I add it doesn't stop there... Not a day goes by that I hope with all my heart that my boys haven't inherited this nasty diesease. My eldest is under going tests as I type. It's heartbreaking. Parenting is hard enough. Having lupus brings it to a whole different level!

  • The "withdrawal method" will not protect you Gemzi as sperm leak from the penis way before ejaculation. With the greatest respect, despite what anyone else says about "the pill", I'd definitely avoid taking any form of hormone therapy - especially as you've been so ill. Make an appt with your local Family Planning Clinic to find out about other forms of contraception, such as "the cap" that will definitely not affect the progression of your disease in any way.

  • what is 'the cap' ?? and yeah i know about pre-ejaculation. I dont want to go on the pill, think i take enough medicine as it is! lol! i am going doctors tomorrow to seem my rhuematology, and see what is said there. im a bit nervous, so embarrasing talking about i, but i know i got to have it spoke about!! and i dont want to have children one day and they have this illness too, its not good! but i will one day have children, just when im a little more better, wiser and healthier and older! got to live life a little now! :)

  • I've had lupus 4 longer than I care 2 remember, I was told there was no way I'd get pregnant, more so due to scar tissue blocking my fallopian tubes due 2 surgeries all connected with lupus. I have had 2 children NATURALLY, both unplanned pregnancies & 1 even whilst on the mini pill (yes, u CAN take it, even with previous CVA's). Both were born early, one 4 weeks, one 6 weeks and there were concerns during both pregnancies but both r very healthy children. Lupus is not HEREDITARY, it's GENETIC. I am the only person in my family (going back 5 generations) who has lupus or anything remotely like lupus & I have ALWAYS had it. Try not 2 panic about the future, u're only worrying about things that may or may not happen which in turn is gonna make u stressed which will aggravate the lupus. Never b embarrassed 2 ask ANYTHING, believe me, they've seen & heard worse ;0)

  • I have a very extreme case of lupus, which involved severe brain damage, lots of throwing up blood, all my hair fell out etc. i am going to the locl gp on tuesday and going to go on the combned pill. was told my rhuematologist that i can go on it, and my lupus is on the mend. although i am anemic but thats expected with lupus. if i have children, is it possible for them to have LUPUS too?

  • Hi Gemzi,

    I don't want to step over the line, but I'd be cautious concerning the combined pill.

    Sue Brown, lead clinical nurse specialist at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases NHS Foundation Trust, Bath, writes;

    "It is advised to convert women to progesterone only oral contraceptive pills as oestrogen is considered to flare lupus."

    Professor Caroline Gordon (Consultant Rheumatologist) writes;

    "Women with lupus are advised to avoid contraception containing oestrogen due to the increased risk of thrombosis (especially in those with anti-phospholipid antibodies) and the possibility of flares.

    Barrier methods or progesterone only contraception are recommended. These include the oral progesterone-only (mini-pill) pill, intra-muscular progesterone injections or implant. The Mirena coil is also suitable for lupus patients in a stable relationship."

    Lupus isn't hereditary so it isn't passed on to children. However, it is genetic in origin. This means that there is an increased possibility that a child of a lupus patient will be predisposed to lupus (or other autoimmune conditions) than a child who's parents don't have lupus or other autoimmune conditions.

  • well the special Rheumatologist who iv trusted for many years, has told me there is a possibility of a flare up, but because im on such strong medication, i think she thinks its unlikely and if it does, i can easily change to another 'pill'. i dont want to go on the coil or watever, because the doc has sed the best and mose effective contraception is the combined pill, or any pills really. I can not have children right now, because i am on methatrexate and that is avery serious drug. I am glad it doesnt get passed on to children, but got to look out for signs if i do ever have them! :)

  • I'm on implanon contraception and been on it before i was diagnosed 2years ago

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