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CREST, Sclero and fertility

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Hi all. I would like to touch on the topic of fertility.

My husband and I have been trying to concieve for 2 years with no luck. I have been seeing my GYN and we went thru the gamut of tests (at this point I did not know I had CREST). My husbands sperm count was extremely low and he was categorized as sterile and we were told that Invitro would be our only hope. During an examination my GYN found a white patch on my upper back which prompted my visit to the Dermatologist/Rhumetologist and the diagnosis was made.

I explained my situation regarding in-vitro to my Rhumetologist and he said not to waste my money because with CREST, implantation would be futile. :(

My question is, has anyone here had problems with conception, and or was there any treatment that would help with implantation? I appreciate all your input.




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Hi Karen,

I was diagnosed withsclero many years ago. I had no problems conceiving, keeping them in was my issue. With my first child I went into preterm labor at 33 weeks. The dr.'s successfully held me from delivering for two weeks. At 35 weeks I had a little baby girl, 4lbs 5 oz and very healthy. My second pregnancy was a bit different. I started contracting at 20 weeks and was put on meds and bedrest immediately. After many stays in the hospital and new drugs to stop the contractions I went into full blown labor, for 3 days at 25 weeks. Miracuously the contractions stopped and I made it until 33 weeks. I delivered another beautiful baby girl, 3lbs 13oz. She was great when she was born but a week later became very ill and was in the hospital for a month and a half. After this I was told not to even try for another child because my body would not be able to carry another baby.


I would get a second opinion...every situation is different.




Lisa Bulman

(Retired) ISN/SCTC List Coordinator

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

(Retired) ISN Assistant News Guide

(Retired) ISN Fundraiser

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Your story is very much a carbon copy of my own.


Although I conceived naturally, my hubby's sperm count was also low and I found this out when trying to conceive again. My daughter was born quite naturally, I had a normal pregnancy, normal birth and normal recovery. I was extremely well throughout, though my problems began almost a year after she was born.


I had several health issues, pneumonia being quite troublesome -- 3 times in all. I simply wanted to extend the family being an only sibling myself was something I hadn't planned for my daughter. We tried for 12 months without success. My general practitioner was very understanding and referred me for specialist treatment. We began a programme of fertility drugs, firstly with oral drugs, then with IV. !2 months into the treatment and I was given a new procedure, the name escapes me now, but it involved IV fertility drugs which were very strong and mood changing. At the end of the cycle I was given another drug and then admitted to hospital under sterile conditions for my eggs to be collected and mixed with my hubby' sperm. I had 3 courses of this treatment before they decided enough was enough!


I was diagnosed with sclero and this was the reason for my infertility they said?


I'd conceived naturally and then had secondary infertility.

I hope this helps but please remember that eveyone is different. This is just my experience.


Best wishes


Barbara x

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My husband and I tried for nearly 3 years to conceive. I went to a fertility specialist and since I had been diagnosed with endometriosis at an early age, he wanted to go in and look around laporoscopically. He did remove some endometrium and un twist one of my fallopian tubes.


Upon leaving he said no "trying" for 6 weeks then I want to see you for a follow up. We "tried" 4 days later and upon my 6 week follow up I was pregnant!


Like Lisa, I also had trouble keeping him in and he surprised us by coming 7 weeks early but was a big boy for being that early (5 pounds) so he only stayed in the special care nursery for 17 days.


My second son wanted to come early too but we were prepared for that second time around. I was on medication and bed rest for the last month of my pregnancy with #2 and he only came 2 weeks early. Both healthy boys to this day - aside from the pink eye this morning! <_<


My autoimmune symptoms started popping up when my first born was about 6 months old.


That's my input - hope it helps.


Take care and good luck,


Take care,



Serena Justis

ISN Blogger

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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I had my Son 4 years ago at age 35, I went into Labour at 32 weeks into the pregnancy. The labour was able to be stopped and I finally gave birth at 35 weeks. My son weighed 4 pound 13oz, he is completely healthy and is already half my height.


I also have suffered from 3 miscarriages , 2 before my son was born and 1 two years ago. I blamed the miscarriages and the fact that my son was born early to age, even though I was still only in my thirties.


I have always had stiff joints most of my life but the symptoms of Scleroderma finally raised its ugly head last year 2007.


We did want more children before my diagnosis of Scleroderma, but even if we wanted to conceive another child I don;t think we would be able to.


Hope this helps



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Thank you all for sharing your stories with me. I must admit that if it were not for my husband and I trying to concieve I would not have been diagnosed with my illness as soon as I was so, I look at our troubles with fertility as having a purpose.

If it's meant to be it will happen. I must first take care of myself and get a handle on what is happening to my body before I can even think of caring for a baby.


Again, thanks to all for your input.



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