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How your asthma can affect your pregnancy

Suffering from asthma can lead to a host of complication in the mother and baby. Here is all that you need to know about this condition

Expecting a child is the most exciting and happy phase in a woman's life, but suffering from an asthma attack is the worst nightmare a pregnant lady can face. As per National Asthma Education Group for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), asthma is one of the most common diseases that can complicate a pregnancy. It is advisable for pregnant women to identify the early asthma symptoms as the disease's effects on pregnant women are appalling.

In fact, fear of asthma complication is one reason why pregnant woman are asked not to smoke. As smoking is a trigger for the condition and can lead to severe complications in late pregnancies and during early infancy. Some studies have pointed out that acute asthma exacerbation during the first trimester is associated with an increased risk of congenital malformations. Poorly controlled asthma is associated with low birth weight, preeclampsia, and preterm birth [1].

This situation can even lead to further complications like oxygen deprivation for the baby, morning sickness, vaginal bleeding, high blood pressure and protein in the urine after 20 weeks of pregnancy for the mother. In case of the baby it can lead to restricted foetal growth, complicated labour, need for a C-section, premature birth, low birth weight and in extreme cases, the baby's life might be in jeopardy [2].

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Since the foetus gets its oxygen from the mother's blood, this condition leads to decreased oxygen in the foetal blood. Swimming is known to be a particularly good exercise for women suffering from asthma. Using an inhaled bronchodilator ten minutes before you exercise may help you better tolerate your recommended exercise during pregnancy. It is also advisable for the pregnant women who have asthma to get their condition monitored on a regular basis. A check-up once in three weeks is recommended by expert doctors worldwide.

References:

1: Vatti RR, Teuber SS. Asthma and pregnancy. Clin Rev Allergy Immunol. 2012 Aug;43(1-2):45-56. doi: 10.1007/s12016-011-8277-8. Review. PubMed PMID: 21858482.

1: Rejn G, Lundholm C, Gong T, Larsson K, Saltvedt S, Almqvist C. Asthma during pregnancy in a population-based study--pregnancy complications and adverse perinatal outcomes. PLoS One. 2014 Aug 20;9(8):e104755. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0104755. eCollection 2014. PubMed PMID: 25141021; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4139314.

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