Managing hypertension before, during, and after pregnancy
By - 18 May 2023
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Pregnancy exponentially elevates the responsibility on the parent, especially on mothers. So now, there are two people at stake and there is codependency. Thus, additional care seems to be the way to glide past 9 months safely. With varied hormonal levels in the mother’s body, a wide pallet of emotions is triggered by various risks of medical conditions. Hypertension is the prime condition affecting 10.3 % of pregnant women in India.
What is hypertension?
Hypertension, often known as high blood pressure, can be harmful to both the mother and the baby, resulting in pre-eclampsia, early delivery, and low birth weight. However, with proper management, women with hypertension can have a safe and healthy pregnancy. This blog will discuss how to manage hypertension before, during, and after pregnancy and explore lifestyle changes, medications, and other strategies that can help control high blood pressure and reduce the risk of complications. Whether planning to have a baby or are already pregnant, this blog will provide valuable information to help manage hypertension and have a successful pregnancy.
Symptoms of hypertension during pregnancy:
The silent killer of heart disease, high blood pressure can go unnoticed by most people. So here are some signs which can help to be aware of this disease.
- Sudden weight gain.
- Changes in vision.
- Nausea or vomiting.
- Peeing only a little bit at a time.
- Pain in your abdomen
- Extra protein in the urine
Pregnancy-related hypertension can take different forms. Let’s check them out in the next segment!
During pregnancy, what are the different types of high blood pressure?
Hypertension during pregnancy can occur in one of three forms:
- Chronic Hypertension
High blood pressure before or during pregnancy (before 20 weeks). This form of hypertension persists after the birth of your child. Superimposed pre-eclampsia, which occurs in 20% to 50% of pregnancies, is the development of pre-eclampsia in a patient with persistent hypertension.
- Preeclampsia (PE)
Preeclampsia is characterized as hypertension (blood pressure >140/90 mmHg) with organ damage, which can have catastrophic repercussions for both the mother and the fetus. PE is known to appear in the second part of pregnancy (usually after 20 weeks).
- Gestational hypertension (GH)
GH is a kind of hypertension that can appear after 20 weeks of pregnancy. This form of hypertension causes no organ harm. Frequent healthcare provider visits are required with GH.
Pregnancy-related high blood pressure: why is it a problem?
- Low birth weight and premature birth
If the placenta does not get enough blood, the fetus may receive less oxygen and nutrients, leading to low birth weight (less than 2500 grams) or early delivery. Chronic hypertension increases the likelihood of this occurring.
A 2.5-fold increase in the risk of coronary artery disease (CAD) and a 4-fold increase in the development of heart failure is associated with PE.
PE alone was associated with a twofold increase in the risk of a major CV event.
Hypertension during pregnancy elevated the risk of type 2 diabetes by 70% and the incidence of hypercholesterolemia by 30% in hypertensive mothers later in life.
- Injury to other organs
Poorly controlled high blood pressure can result in injury to other organs.
Management and treatment
Pharmacologic treatment of hypertension during pregnancy aims to avoid acute consequences while reducing fetal risk. Severe hypertension should be aggressively treated to reduce the risk of progression to preeclampsia. Low-dose aspirin is indicated for people with persistent hypertension, and it helps reduce the incidence of PE.
- Taking blood pressure medication as prescribed
- Checking your blood pressure at home
- Regular healthcare provider visits
- Eat a healthy diet
- Stay active
- Avoid smoking and alcohol-containing beverages
- Get plenty of rest
In this blog, we will go one step further to help manage hypertension effectively with Apollo Pharmacy and its health checkups. All of the above-mentioned products, including blood pressure medication, Blood pressure monitor machines are available at your local Apollo Pharmacy or can be delivered to your door via free online delivery.
The consequences of hypertension and its prevalence during pregnancy. It is critical to regulate and monitor blood pressure during pregnancy, as well as after delivery, as there is a risk of postpartum hypertension.
Overall, by managing hypertension before, during, and after pregnancy, women can reduce the risk of complications and ensure the best possible outcomes for themselves and their babies.
- Managing Chronic Hypertension in Pregnant Women available at -https://www.aafp.org/pubs/afp/issues/2019/1215/p782.html
- Hypertension During Pregnancy and After Delivery available at -
- 10 Things To Know About Hypertension, Available at https://ur.life/article/10-things-to-know-about-hypertension
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