CERTOLIZUMAB PEGOL & PREGNANCY

Hi, I am new to the site and looking for advice, I have rhumatoid arthritis, was diagnosed 6 years, been on numerous medication, stopped all medication 1-2 years ago as planning a family, my rhumatoid is currently active and i am feeling like I now need to be back on medication but I need the safest form of medication as wanting to conceive, i have been told by my rheumatologist that certolizumab pegol is a good medication to be on if wanting to conceive, is anybody on the medication? Any1 on it and pregnant, been pregnant while on it? Before and after pregnancy? Any advice I would really appreciate ❣

Comments

  • Anna
    Anna Moderator Posts: 695

    Hello @Chelsea30 and welcome to the online community, I'm sure you'll find help and support from our members.

    Living with rheumatoid arthritis is challenging, and trying to conceive doubles the challenge! I've been living with RA since the age of 19, and was able to conceive and have two daughters without too much trouble when in my 30s. I wasn't on Certolizumab Pegol but did carry on taking NSAIDs until I became pregnant. I went into remission for both pregnancies, and this is not uncommon. As each person is different, and reacts differently to drugs and pregnancy, you would do well to discuss your concerns with your medical team.

    NRAS have published an informative article on RA and pregnancy that includes a section on Anti-TFN biologic drugs including Certolizumab Pegol - it looks quite positive.

    All the best to you, do let us know how you're getting on.

    Anna

  • Chelsea30
    Chelsea30 Member Posts: 9
    Hi Anna, thank you so much for your response, my rhumatoligist has hugely recommended the biological drugs especially for wanting to start a family, I would wait until after pregnancy before going on anything but at the moment with covid 19, our plans are currently on hold and my rhumatoid is quite bad at the moment so quite eager to get started on something and also hoping that maybe going on something now and through pregnancy the flare ups after having a baby wont be so bad (wishful thinking)
    How was your rhumatoid after pregnancy? Was the flare ups as bad as they say? X
  • Anna
    Anna Moderator Posts: 695

    Hi @Chelsea30

    After my first daughter was born I was absolutely fine, no flare-ups at all. My second daughter was a different story though, I had a bad flare up after she was born and that's when I started hydroxychloroquine and etoricoxib which sorted me out.

    It's interesting that you think maybe starting on something now and through pregnancy might help with flare-ups - I was on NSAIDs during my first pregnancy and had no flare-up after my daughter was born but took no meds before or during my second pregnancy three years later and had a bad flare-up, so you could be right.

    The NRAS article certainly speaks positively of Certolizumab Pegol and if your rheumatologist is supportive, it sounds like a good option.

    Good Luck! What an adventure you're going on - wish I could do it all again!

    Ax

  • Chelsea30
    Chelsea30 Member Posts: 9
    Thank you so much Anna, yes am really excited to just start my own family now, having a family has always been so important to me. & yes from what I have read myself on the drugs it does seem to be very positive.
    Thanks again Anna, i will keep you updated x
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,224

    Chelsea,

    I have checked out the biologic you mention and was pleased , and surprised, to discover that NICE considers it safe in pregnancy.

    I've been a member of this forum for some years and, previously, people seem to have been taken off all meds and put on steroids for the duration of not only a pregnancy but also of trying to conceive.

    Even this would have been great for me. Back in the early 70's, when I had my two, nothing was considered safe apart from soluble aspirin. (There were no biologics, then, and no modern DMARDS of any kind.)

    My first pregnancy went like a dream. I was in remission for the duration. Then he was born and wham! I had a really tough time. Fast forward three years and I was ready for another go. This time it was a nightmare. No remission just pain, pan, pain. It got no better after he was born for some time and now I had two small boys to deal with. Without a good husband and much parental help I don't know how I'd have coped.

    That was all nearly fifty years and several joint replacements ago. They now have sons of their own. They're both good sons and good dads. Would I do it again? I'm not sure I'd have the courage knowing what I now know. Do I regret it? Not for an instant.

    Enjoy being able to have an easier time than I did. And enjoy your future children. Liaise with your rheumatologist all the way. And good luck!

  • Chelsea30
    Chelsea30 Member Posts: 9
    Thank you so much for your message,
    It sounds like you had a really tough time but I can imagine your 2 boys got you through it, I have heard a few ppl now who say there 1st baby was a dream and the 2nd completely different being in constant pain! You just never know 1 day to the next with joint pain! Cant thank you enough for replying back and also for looking in to the drug for me, thank you