What Medical Problems may Occur During Pregnancy

Millions of women become pregnant every year and a significant proportion of these pregnancies are complicated by one or more of the medical disorders that can occur during pregnancy. Some of the medical disorders during pregnancy are common and some are less common and some of the medical disorders during pregnancy are rare. The pattern of medical disorders during is also changing. Medical science is advancing rapidly and many medical disorders which were considered contraindications of pregnancy few decades ago are no more considered contraindication of pregnancy. Due to advancement of obstetrics, neonatology, obstetric anesthesiology, and medicine, the expectation of happy outcome of pregnancy for the mother as well as the fetus has also increased to a great extent.

Marked physiological changes occur during pregnancy (e.g. marked increase in cardiac output and workload of heart, which is as much as 40% increase) and the mother’s body need to adapt to these physiological changes appropriately to have a good outcome of pregnancy. Medical disorders which interfere with physiological adaptations of pregnancy can increase the risk of a poor outcome of pregnancy and pregnancy may sometimes aggravate the preexisting medical disorder in a woman.

The medical disorders which can occur during pregnancy are preeclampsia (development of hypertension and presence of protein in urine after 20 weeks of pregnancy or gestation) which occurs in approximately 5-7% of all pregnancies, eclampsia, gestational hypertension, aggravation of existing essential hypertension, cardiovascular disorders (like mitral stenosis, mitral and aortic regurgitation etc.), renal disorders, pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis, hormonal disorders (like diabetes, gestational diabetes, hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism), blood disorders, neurological disorders, gastrointestinal disorders and liver diseases. The pregnant women are also prone to develop certain bacterial (urinary tract infection, which is very common medical problem during pregnancy) and viral infections (cytomegalovirus infection, rubella, herpes, HIV infection etc.).

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