Heart Disease & Pregnancy

Heart Disease & Pregnancy

Heart diseases are very common amongst women during old age due to stress and work life. What most of us don’t know is that the risk of heart diseases increases during pregnancy. During pregnancy, there are a lot of changes that takes place in your heart and blood vessels.

There is an extra stress on your body which required your heart to work more during pregnancy. These changes are quite common during pregnancy as it is required for your baby to get sufficient oxygen and nutrients.

Changes during Pregnancy

The common changes that take place in your body during pregnancy include:

  • Increase in blood volume

The common changes observed during the first trimester are the increase in blood volume. The amount of blood increases in your body by 40-50 percent during pregnancy and remains high throughout the pregnancy.

  • Increase in cardiac output

Cardiac output generally refers to the amount of blood that is pumped by your heart each minute. During pregnancy, the cardiac output increases by 30-40% because of the increase in blood volume.

  • Increase in heart rate

It is quite normal for your heart rate to increase by 10-15 % per minute during pregnancy. As the cardiac output increases, there is an increase in your heart rate.

  • Decrease in blood pressure

Blood pressure generally decreases by 10mmHg in pregnancy. The drop in blood pressure is mainly due to the hormonal changes and because more blood is directed towards the uterus. In most of the cases, the symptoms are usually not visible. Blood pressure is usually monitored during prenatal appointments to avoid complications.

Heart diseases in women are common and if you are planning for a baby in this condition, there are certain risks that you need to keep in mind. It is better to consult the cardiologist and your gynecologist before planning a pregnancy. The following diseased conditions require medical assistance:

      1. Hypertension or high blood cholesterol
      2. Arrhythmia/heart failure/rheumatic fever and cardiomyopathy
      3. Cardiac histories like transient ischemic attack or stroke
      4. Abnormal heart rhythm
      5. Narrowing of aortic valve

Prior cardiac diseased conditions pose a risk for both mother and the baby. Heart diseases in pregnancy can increase the risk of stroke and other complications due to stress. The treatment for heart diseases is must before planning a baby to avoid the risks.

Common heart problems in childbearing age women

Women of childbearing age are commonly affected with the following heart problems:

  • Obstructive lesions

Obstructive lesions generally reduce the amount of blood flow to your heart and other major blood vessels. Obstructive lesions also include the aortic coarctation that can cause high blood pressure during pregnancy.

  • Shunt lesions

Shunt lesions are the common congenital heart defects seen in women of childbearing age. Pulmonary hypertension is a common condition seen in patients with shunt lesions.

  • Complex lesions

Complex lesions generally include the transposition of the large arteries. Surgery can be done to repair the complex lesions, but the surgery can increase the problem with heart chambers which can lead to heart failure.

In case if you are unable to conceive while suffering from a heart disease, you can consult the infertility specialist. Hegde fertility center is the best fertility center in Hyderabad. Dr. Vandana Hegde is the best infertility specialist who can treat the infertility issues.

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