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Can infliximab affect fertility, pregnancy and breastfeeding?

If you're planning to try for a baby, if you become pregnant, or if you're thinking of breastfeeding we suggest you discuss your medications with your rheumatologist.

Current guidelines state that infliximab can be used during pregnancy and in men trying to father a child. If it's used during pregnancy it will usually be stopped after four months. If it's used after this, it's possible, but not proven, that it may increase the risk of infection in the newborn baby.

However, if there's concern that your arthritis may flare up if infliximab is stopped then you can continue with it throughout pregnancy – in this case, your baby should not have any live vaccines (such as BCG) until they're seven-months old.

Women who are also on methotrexate should stop taking it and use contraception for at least three months before trying for a baby.

The guidelines state that there's no need for men to stop methotrexate when trying to father a baby. There's only limited information about the use of infliximab while breastfeeding. Small amounts of infliximab may pass into the breast milk, but this doesn't appear to be harmful.

You should not re-start methotrexate until you stop breastfeeding.


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