There is yet another form of hypertension referred to as pulmonary hypertension and this happens to be the most threatening of the lot. Pulmonary hypertension is a condition caused by excess pressure on the pulmonary arteries. This pressure causes the arteries to tighten or the blood in them to clot, resulting in lack of blood flow from the arteries into the left ventricle of the heart. This condition is dangerous as it leads to other life threatening problems like heart failure.
Considering the seriousness of this condition, one can only imagine...
...how much more critical it can become if a pregnant woman suffers from this condition.
As a rule, if a woman has this condition then doctors recommend not having a baby as the additional pressure on the heart can be fatal. If a woman does go ahead with the pregnancy then she is put under round the clock observation, especially in the third trimester. It is also common for a pregnant woman to deliver prematurely and if preterm labor doesn't happen naturally, doctors prefer scheduling one soon after 32 weeks of gestation.
Another problem with pulmonary hypertension is that it is usually diagnosed too late. It generally takes a stroke or a heart failure to recognize the underlying problem.
Also, sometimes pulmonary hypertension could be a secondary condition to a cardio-respiratory disease. Pulmonary hypertension during pregnancy has a high mortality rate, which makes it a cause for grave concern for the mother and the baby. The additional stress of pumping blood could lead to shock or worse, heart failure.
The increased pressure in the arteries can be caused by any number of reasons, therefore treating pulmonary hypertension involves identifying the cause and attempting to halt or reverse the condition.
While there are no obvious symptoms, those suffering from pulmonary hypertension may feel shortness of breath and in its severest form, require oxygen support. They may also feel nauseous, dizzy, fatigued, have coughing spells and general weakness. In addition they may also experience a loss of appetite, palpitations and leg edema.
In case you have pulmonary hypertension and want to have a baby despite that, then there are common sense measures you can undertake to remain healthy. Firstly, smoking and drinking alcohol is a big no-no. Also, if you are on the heavier side, you should look to shed a few pounds. Focus on some exercise routines that help the body use oxygen more efficiently, so you can breathe easily. And lastly, but most importantly, take the prescribed medication on time. These measures will go a long way in improving your chances of having a healthier life and a slightly safer pregnancy despite pulmonary hypertension.