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Advice on use of interferon during pregnancy (any literature out there?)

Hi all,

I am about to embark on a frozen embryo transfer in February after having frozen 5 embryos prior to starting Dasatinib 3 years ago. I have just reached a log 4.5 reduction for the first time and personally I feel like I’m in a good spot.

My doctor has just given me a treatment plan which includes coming off Dasatinib for 4-6 weeks prior to implantation and then going on interferon as soon as I get pregnant.

My doctor has sought advice from a CML/fertility expert so I think she’s keen to follow his lead, but I was wondering if anyone has any literature I could share with her about other approaches to managing pregnancy and CML?

Also, has anyone been on interfuron or have any experience with it? I’ll be honest, I would rather just take the risk and monitor my BCR / ABL than take interfuron as a preventative measure given the side effects are pretty bad including flu like symptoms and fatigue every day.

They discovered my CML during a random routine test so I’ve never had really high numbers and I’ve responded well to Dasatinib since day 1.

I feel like no one is actually considering my specific risk profile, which I feel is low. I’d prefer not to be on anything whilst pregnant. That said, I don’t want to go against my doctor’s thinking either because how am I to know what’s right, and I of course don’t want to put myself in danger.

Any input and advice would be welcomed!

Hi Loralie,

I would urge you to watch this video from Prof Apperley. She’s about the most experienced doctor in the world when it comes to CML and pregnancy.

She’s not the biggest fan of interferon, and I believe she tries to avoid it. I think her reasoning might be explained in the above video … but basically it boils down to the fact that interferon can make you feel awful, and anyway takes a very long time to work so the benefit is not as great as some people expect. Also, we have a better understanding of TKIs now and the critical times during the pregnancy they must be avoided rather than an outright blanket-ban on them.

You could also reach out directly to Hammersmith Hospital on this link which is where Jane practices.

Sounds to me like you have a good case to do what you want - discontinue your TKI, hopefully become pregnant soon, and monitor closely rather than just blindly take interferon.