Can I Be Pregnant with End Stage Renal Disease

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,
I have ESRD (End Stage Renal Disease) and my periods are pretty normal. I get treatments three times a week and never missed one.

I read up on the internet that women with ESRD can get pregnant but because of the treatments there is a chance that it will be harder for them.

Me and my husband have been having unprotected sex but I have never missed a period before. At first we thought it was going to be late like it was last month but it still hasn't shown. I took a HPT and it was negative. I am four days late and I don't know what to do. Could I be pregnant with ESRD?

ANSWER

Yes, but pregnancy is usually very dangerous to your health, since pregnancy puts such a huge demand on the kidneys.

I'm assuming you knew this, that you were trying to get pregnant anyway since you were having unprotected sex, and that you have discussed this with your doctors. If you still don't have your period when you are two weeks late, re-test.

If you are pregnant, do get prenatal care as soon as you can.

-- Cynthia, CNM

Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.