Treatment Of High Blood Pressure
Your doctor will decide if you should take medication to keep your blood pressure under control.
The treatment of high blood pressure during pregnancy will depend on the womans condition and medical history, as well as the overall condition of the pregnancy. Your doctor will determine what to do in accordance with their personal assessment of the situation.
They may prescribe blood pressure medications that are safe for you and your baby. Take the medication as instructed by your doctor. Dont suspend it or modify your doses.
Moreover, your doctor may recommend you to drink enough liquids , that you eat a balanced diet with a low intake of salt and processed foods, such as sweets, sausages, and fried foods, and that you get plenty of rest.
More severe cases may require hospitalization to prevent the possible development of preeclampsia.
To prevent high blood pressure during pregnancy, we recommend doing regular exercise , drinking enough water, avoiding coffee and caffeinated beverages, and minimizing your salt intake.
If you have questions about this topic, talk to your doctor during your next prenatal checkup. Theyll be able to answer your questions better than anyone else by adapting the information to your personal medical history and physical condition.
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Can High Blood Pressure Affect The Baby
High blood pressure in pregnancy can prevent blood from flowing to the placenta. Because the baby doesnt get enough nutrients or oxygen, they are at higher risk of being low birth weight or being born prematurely.
For this reason, its very important that high blood pressure is picked up early and treated.
When To Contact A Doctor
It is imperative to consult a doctor if signs of preeclampsia appear: sharp pains in the head, nausea, vomiting, and protein in the urine. This complication of pregnancy is extremely dangerous for both mother and child. There is a threat of miscarriage or fetal growth retardation.
It is necessary to call an ambulance in case of severe shortness of breath, swelling, pallor of the skin, or abdominal pain. A high-pressure surge can signal a premature pregnancy or miscarriage.
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Questions For Your Doctor
- Im pregnant and have high blood pressure. How great is my risk of developing gestational hypertension or preeclampsia?
- Is there anything I can do to reduce my risk?
- Will medicines help me?
- How often will I need to see you for appointments?
- What are my treatment options?
- Will I need bed rest?
- Will I need a C-section? Or can I have a vaginal birth?
Why Is Gestational Hypertension A Concern
With high blood pressure, there is an increase in the resistance of blood vessels. This may hinder blood flow in many different organ systems in the expectant mother including the liver, kidneys, brain, uterus, and placenta.
There are other problems that may develop as a result of severe gestational hypertension . Placental abruption may occur in some pregnancies. Gestational hypertension can also lead to fetal problems including intrauterine growth restriction and stillbirth.
If untreated, severe gestational hypertension may cause dangerous seizures and even death in the mother and fetus. Because of these risks, it may be necessary for the baby to be delivered early, before 37 weeks gestation.
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What Are The Symptoms
High blood pressure usually doesn’t cause symptoms. You will probably feel fine, even if your blood pressure is too high.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any signs of very high blood pressure or preeclampsia, such as:
- A severe headache.
- Pain in your upper belly.
- Rapid weight gainmore than 2 lb in a week or 6 lb in a month.
What Causes High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy
Some women have a higher chance to getting high blood pressure while theyre pregnant. These include women who:
- Are having their first baby.
- Have a mom or sister who had high blood pressure while pregnant.
- Are carrying multiple babies .
- Are older than 40 years old.
- Are African American.
- Were overweight when they became pregnant.
- Had high blood pressure before they became pregnant.
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What Causes High Blood Pressure In Pregnancy
Several factors² increase your risk of all types of high blood pressure during pregnancy, including:
Being Black or Hispanic
Assisted reproduction, such as in-vitro fertilization
Research shows that you could be more likely to develop preeclampsia³ if you had diabetes before this pregnancy, have obesity, are carrying multiple babies, this is your first pregnancy, or you had the condition in a previous pregnancy. Having chronic hypertension also raises your risk of developing preeclampsia.
Why Would Blood Pressure Go Up And Down
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Will Gestational Hypertension Go Away After Pregnancy
Blood pressure often increases in the weeks following pregnancy, so doctors usually have women with gestational hypertension continue to monitor their levels at home. For most women, blood pressure levels gradually return to normal in the weeks and months after.
Doctors may recommend that women with high blood pressure make changes to their diets and physical activity levels to decrease the risk of chronic hypertension.
What Are The Risks Of Chronic Hypertension
When not properly controlled, chronic hypertension increases the risk of:
- Problems with concentrating and thinking
Additional risks of chronic hypertension during pregnancy include:
- Placental abruption, where the placenta separates from the uterus
- Needing to undergo a C-section
- Low birth weight because the fetus doesnt receive enough blood through the placenta
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Why Is High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy A Problem
The main risk of having high blood pressure during pregnancy is developing pre-eclampsia. Pre-eclampsia is a serious condition and it can affect both you and your baby. Read more about pre-eclampsia.
If your blood pressure remains mildly to moderately raised and you dont develop pre-eclampsia, the risk of pregnancy complications is low. However, it is important that your blood pressure and urine are checked regularly throughout your pregnancy to check for signs of pre-eclampsia.
Protein In Your Urine
Proteinuria, another sign of preeclampsia, is the result of proteins, normally confined to the blood by the filtering role of your kidney, spilling into your urine. This is because preeclampsia temporarily damages this filter. Albumin, as well as many other proteins, are lost this way.
A simple dipstick test of your urine at each prenatal check-up can screen for proteinuria, though other methods may be used in clinics and medical offices such as a Protein:Creatinine Ratio or a timed urine collection.
What you can do…
During each prenatal visit, ask your health care provider for the results of your urine test. A nurse will have dipped a reagent strip into a sample of your urine. A reading of trace protein is relatively common and is usually not a cause for concern. However, if the reading is 1+ or greater, it may signify the onset of preeclampsia, even if your blood pressure is below 140/90. If you are concerned, or have had preeclampsia before, you can buy reagent strips at some pharmacies or online. Should you record a reading of 2+ or greater at home, call your healthcare provider that very same day.
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So How Much Does Running Lower Blood Pressure
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What Causes High Blood Pressure Among Potential Couples
Most people develop high blood pressure from lifestyle or genetic issues. Without immediate treatment for high blood pressure at home, fertility and virility get reduced, affecting natural fertilisation.
Here are the leading reasons that escalate hypertension:
- A complete ban on eating a fat-rich diet, alcoholism and smoking
Healthcare providers dont know what causes this condition. The following things may increase your risk:
- Having high blood pressure before pregnancy or with a past pregnancy
- Having kidney disease
- Being younger than 20 years of age or older than 40 years of age
- Bring pregnant with multiples, such as twins or triplets
- Being African American
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What Is Considered Low Blood Pressure In Pregnancy
If you’re generally feeling well, nothing is really too low, within reason. But blood pressure that’s abnormally low, which is called hypotension, can lead to dizziness and fainting and is represented by a systolic reading lower than 90 or a diastolic number of 60.Trusted SourceMayo ClinicLow Blood Pressure See All Sources
How High Blood Pressure Feels During Pregnancy
High blood pressure may not be accompanied by additional sensations. It is discovered by chance during a visit to the gynecologist. There will be an increased indicator on the tonometer, and the woman may not complain at all about the symptoms. Sensations are most often more vivid: headaches, pulsation of the temples, shortness of breath, swelling, etc.
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Will My Blood Pressure Return To Normal After Birth
If you are diagnosed with gestational hypertension or preeclampsia, your blood pressure may return to normal after the delivery .
If you have complications, your medical team may keep you in the hospital for close monitoring and treatment after your baby is born.
Pregnant women with chronic hypertension need to have their blood pressure checked frequently after delivery to ensure it returns to safe levels and inform any medication adjustments before they are discharged.
Tips For Tracking Blood Pressure During Pregnancy
There are ways to track your blood pressure between doctor visits.
You can buy a blood pressure monitor from a pharmacy or online medical goods store. Many of these devices will go on your wrist or upper arm. To check the monitors accuracy, take it to your doctors office and compare the readings on the monitor to those from your doctor.
Visit a grocery store, pharmacy, or other store that has a machine that takes blood pressure readings.
For the most accurate readings, take your blood pressure at the same time every day. Take it while seated with your legs uncrossed. Use the same arm each time.
Notify your doctor immediately if you have repeated high blood pressure readings that are four hours apart or symptoms of high blood pressure.
If you have high blood pressure during pregnancy, there can be complications.
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Are There Any Symptoms Of High Blood Pressure In Pregnancy
Symptoms can vary from person to person and during each pregnancy, but the main symptom of high blood pressure when you’re expecting is a high reading in the second half of gestation, usually around week 20. Yet one of the tricky things about high blood pressure when you’re pregnant is that some women feel completely normal and don’t show any symptoms at all.
Lowering Blood Pressure Appears To Be Safe For Baby Too
Contact: Nicole Napoli, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202.669.1465
Treating even mildly elevated, or non-severe, blood pressure during pregnancy reduces the risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes and is unlikely to harm the developing baby, according to a study being presented at the American College of Cardiologys 71st Annual Scientific Session.
When compared with pregnant women whose mild hypertension wasnt actively treated, those who received medications to lower their blood pressure to less than 140/90 mmHg had about a 20% reduction in the combined rate of severe preeclampsia, preterm birth before 35 weeks, abruption and fetal or newborn deaththe studys primary outcome. The benefits of treating mild chronic hypertension, defined as high blood pressure that is less than 160/110 mmHg, remained even after controlling for other factors that may have played a role, such as hypertension treatment before pregnancy, race/ethnicity or diabetes.
The Chronic Hypertension and Pregnancy Project was designed to assess the benefits and harm of treating pregnant women with mild chronic hypertension. The open-labeled, randomized, controlled trial enrolled 2,408 women with known mild chronic hypertension and who were less than 23 weeks into their pregnancy at 61 sites between 2015 and 2021. Women were similar across groups with over half already taking blood pressure-lowering medicine at enrollment 48% were Black, 28% non-Hispanic white and 20% Hispanic.
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What Are Normal Blood Pressure Changes In Pregnancy
A baby receives all its food and oxygen from the mother. This means that your heart has to work harder to send blood to the placenta and then to your baby.
The placenta usually has large blood vessels that make it easy for the food to get to your baby. Because these blood vessels are so big, your blood pressure normally drops during the middle third of your pregnancy and returns to normal by the end of the pregnancy.
If your blood pressure is too high during pregnancy, this may indicate that the blood vessels in the placenta have not developed normally. This is a risk to you and your baby, as it can be a sign of a serious complication known as pre-eclampsia.
Preeclampsia With No Severe Signs Or Symptoms
Pregnant women with preeclampsia that arent showing any severe signs or symptoms usually monitor their blood pressure and the number of kicks their baby makes every day at home. Normally, they visit their doctors once or twice per week for monitoring.
Around 37 weeks, doctors usually order tests to assess how much the baby has grown and developed. These tests may include:
- Nonstress testing to check the fetus heart
- Ultrasounds to check the festus development
- Doppler flow studies to monitor blood flow to the fetus
Doctors may also prescribe corticosteroids to help the babys lungs develop. Normally, doctors recommend induced labor. Women will usually receive an IV before and after pregnancy to help prevent seizures. If they experience any complications during labor, they may need to undergo a C-section.
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Latest High Blood Pressure News
One in 10 women will develop high blood pressure for the first time in their lives during the year after they give birth to a child, a new study finds.
The study findings have implications for postpartum care, particularly among patients without a history of hypertension, said study lead author Samantha Parker, an assistant professor of epidemiology at Boston University School of Public Health.
We were surprised at the number of cases captured more than six weeks after delivery, a period that falls well outside of routine postpartum follow-up, Parker said in a university news release. Monitoring during this period could mitigate severe postpartum and long-term cardiovascular complications.
Very little data exists for the women who develop it more than six weeks after giving birth. That’s despite the fact that about one-quarter of those who develop high blood pressure for the first time after pregnancy will do so in that timeframe, the researchers said.
Past research has found that new-onset high blood pressure after childbirth may be 2.5 times more common in Black women than in white women.