High Blood Pressure And The Fetus

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High Blood Pressure And The Fetus

High Blood Pressure
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Basics
High Blood Pressure And The Fetus
High Blood Pressure And The Fetus
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High blood pressure can put your baby at risk. Learn how to make your pregnancy as safe as possible.
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InteliHealth
2011-02-22
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InteliHealth Medical Content
2014-02-22

Reviewed by the Faculty of Harvard Medical School

High Blood Pressure And The Fetus
 
High blood pressure that is present before a pregnancy or develops during pregnancy can put your baby at risk. High blood pressure increases the risk of delivering a low birth weight baby or delivering a baby prematurely. If long-standing high blood pressure has damaged the mother's kidneys, there is a higher risk of miscarriage or fetal death. This is especially true if blood pressure is not well controlled when pregnancy begins.

High blood pressure that develops during pregnancy can be a sign of complications such as preeclampsia.

In order to make your pregnancy as safe as possible (for you and your baby):

  • See a doctor for regular prenatal care.
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol; they both make complications of high blood pressure worse.
  • Manage your blood pressure before pregnancy through diet and exercise.
  • Continue good eating habits during pregnancy, including a low-salt diet.
  • Don't attempt to lose weight during pregnancy, even if you are overweight.
  • Ask your doctor if you should avoid exercise during pregnancy if you have high blood pressure. Your doctor may recommend that you avoid vigorous exercise during pregnancy. (Exercising during pregnancy might lead to less blood flow through the placenta.)
  • Discuss your need for blood-pressure medication with your doctor before and during pregnancy, and make sure any medicine you take during pregnancy is safe.

 

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Last updated June 10, 2014


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