22 Oct High Blood Pressure: What Expectant Mothers Need to Know
Pregnancy is already a stressful time for expectant mothers. In addition to dealing with the fatigue, cramping, nausea and other symptoms that normally accompany a pregnancy, expectant mothers have to watch out for their blood pressure. If left unchecked, high blood pressure (hypertension) can cause serious complications for mothers and their babies. Below, we discuss the types of hypertension that pregnant women experience and their associated risks. If you are at all concerned with the impact that high blood pressure may have on your pregnancy, consult Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC, the best interventional cardiologist in Tampa.
Types of Hypertension
There are several types of hypertension that women can experience throughout pregnancy. You can experience gestational hypertension, chronic hypertension, or preeclampsia. All forms of hypertension can create complications during your pregnancy, including low birth weight and premature birth. However, the most dangerous of the three is preeclampsia, which can develop from gestational and chronic hypertension.
Preeclampsia is hypertension that occurs suddenly after the 20th week of pregnancy. The cause of preeclampsia remains unknown, but it’s results are apparent. Make no mistake, this is a serious condition that can threaten the life of both mother and child. Preeclampsia can lead to the following complications:
- Placental Abruption
- Low Birth Weight
- Slow Fetal Growth
- Premature Birth
- Heart Disease
- Organ Damage
- HELLP Syndrome
Aside from high blood pressure, those with preeclampsia may be experiencing kidney and liver issues, severe headaches, light sensitivity, blurry vision, right side abdominal pain, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, decreased platelets, labored breathing, easy bruising, and sudden swelling in extremities. If you’re experiencing any of the above symptoms, Dr. Popat can run tests to determine if you have preeclampsia.
Approaching the Delivery Date
Discuss with your OB-GYN how best to proceed if you are diagnosed with preeclampsia. If you are far enough along, your doctor may elect to deliver your baby early. However, if you are less than 37 weeks pregnant, your blood pressure will need to be closely monitored and managed for the remainder of the pregnancy. Maintain your appointments. Avoid any illicit drug use. Consult a medical professional to discuss which medications are safe and only take medications as prescribed. Aside from these recommendations, the best thing you can do for your child is to prioritize your health.
While you should trust the expertise of your OB-GYN, you should consult a specialist to assist you with managing your high blood pressure. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends, you should “continue to choose healthy foods and keep a healthy weight.” As the best interventional cardiologist in Tampa, Dr. Popat specializes in managing heart health through evidenced-based approaches that focus on nutrition. He can monitor your blood pressure and work with you to develop strategies to ensure that your high blood pressure doesn’t get in the way of a healthy pregnancy. For an ally that will assist you with maintaining your heart health throughout your pregnancy, consult Dr. Popat, a board-certified specialist in interventional cardiology in Tampa.
To consult with Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC, a cardiologist in Tampa, FL, please call (813) 344-0934 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment.
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