Nursing Student Class Projects (Formerly MSN)

Academic Term

Summer 2015

Document Type


Course Number

NURS 5330

Course Name

Advanced Pathophysiology

Professor’s Name

John D. Chovan, James R. Cacchillo


Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, Pregnancy

Subject Categories

Immune System Diseases | Medical Pathology | Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing


Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a life-long, life-threatening autoimmune disease which can affect any organ in the body (Marks & Tullus, 2011). SLE disproportionately affects women in a ratio of 9:1 compared to men with most women being affected during child-bearing age (15-50 years) (Ferenkeh-Koroma, 2012). Pregnancy represents a challenge for the patient with SLE. Pregnant patients with SLE are considered high-risk for multiple medical and obstetric complications, as flares are related to increased irreversible organ damage (Ateka- Barrutia & Khamashta, 2013). Severe flares are also associated with poor fetal outcomes (Peart & Clowse, 2014). Successful pregnancies happen in 67% of women with lupus compared to 85% in the general population (Ferenkeh-Koroma, 2012). There is a 20-fold risk in maternal mortality and an increased rate of hypertension, pre-gestational diabetes, renal impairment, pulmonary hypertension, major infections, thrombotic events, and other hematological complications in patients with lupus (Ateka- Barrutia & Khamashta, 2013). There is a higher risk for preterm labor in patients with lupus with 25% of pregnancies resulting in delivery before 37 weeks gestation (Ferenkeh-Koroma, 2012). There is also a greater risk for pre-eclampsia, intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) and cesarean section (Ateka-Barrutia & Khamashta, 2013).



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