Common Pregnancy Disorders

Common pregnancy disorders are the symptoms and traumas that are linked with pregnancy. There are both routine disorders and severe, even prominently fatal also. The routine troubles are normal complications, and are not severe to either the woman or the fetus. 

Common Pregnancy Disorders

Back Pain

  • Causes: Common, specifically in the third trimester when the women’s center of gravity has moved.

  • Treatment: Mild exercise, gentle massage, hot pads, paravetamol (acetaminophen), and (in serious cases) muscle relaxants or narcotics

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

  • This occurs in nearly an estimated 21% to 62% of occasions, probably due to edema. 

Constipation

  • Cause: Poor bowel movement (normal in pregnancy), which can result in higher absorption of water.

  • Treatment: Enhanced PO fluids, stool softeners, bulking agents and drinking sufficient water and eating fruit and fiber based foods often help

A woman feeling sudden defecation should report this to the doctor.

Contractions

  • Frequent, irregular, painless contractions that occur many a times every day are common and are acknowledged as Braxton Hicks contractions

  • Cause: Dehydration

  • Treatment: Lot of fluid intake

  • Complications: Regular contractions (in the interval of 10-15 min) are a symptom of preterm labor and should be examined by cervical exam.

Pica

  • Cravings for none edible items like dirt or clay. Generally avoid ice chips; it may deteriorate anemia

  • Caused by deficiency of Iron and can be treated with Iron supplements or prenatal vitamins.

Dehydration

  • Caused by: Increased intravascular area and increased third spacing of fluids

  • Treatment: Lot of fluid intake

  • Complication: Uterine contractions, which can be witnessed due to dehydration causes body release of ADH.

Edema

  • Caused by: Compression of the inferior vena cava (IVC) and pelvic nerves by the uterus resulting to enhanced hydrostatic pressure in lower areas.

  • Treatment: Lifting legs above the heart for which the patient should be careful to sleep on her side

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)

  • Caused by: Relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) and enhanced transit span in the abdomen (normal in pregnancy)

  • Treatment: Antacids, multiple small meals in a day, ward off lying down immediately after eating, H2 blockers, proton pump inhibitors

Hemorrhoids

  • Caused by: Enhanced venous stasis and IVC pressure resulting in congestion in venous system as well as increased stomach pressure secondary to constipation.

  • Treatment: Topical anesthetics, treatment of constipation

Lower Abdominal Pain

  • Caused by: Fast expansion of the uterus and also expansion of ligaments like the round ligament.

  • Treatment: Paracetamol (acetaminophen)

Increased Urinary Frequency

  • Caused by: Enhanced intravascular volume, elevated GFR (glomerular filtration rate), and due to pressure on the bladder by the expanding uterus. 

  • Treatment: Continue to take liquid despite this. Urinalysis and culture should be conducted to avoid infection, which can also result in increased urinary frequency but generally is accompanied by dysuria (pain when urinating).

Varicose veins

  • Caused by: Easiness of the venous smooth muscle and enhanced intravascular pressure.

  • Treatment: Elevation of the legs, pressure stockings, relieves swelling and pain with warm sitz bath. Avoid weight gain, long standing or sitting, constrictive clothing and constipation.

Pelvic Girdle Pain (PGP)

  • Caused by: PGP disorder is complex and likely and is often seen with a series of sub-groups with diverse underlying pain drivers from central nervous system that can change firmness of muscles.

  • Treatment: A mild case may need rest, rehabilitation therapy and pain is generally bearable. More severe cases would include mobility aids, strong analgesics and often surgery. 

Deep Vein Thrombosis

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is witnessed 0.5 to 7 per 1,000 pregnancies, and is the second most general cause of maternal death in western countries after bleeding.

  • Caused by: Hypercoagulability as a physiological response to potential profuse bleeding at childbirth.

  • Treatment: Prophylactic treatment, e.g. with low molecular weight heparin may be witnessed when there are other risk factors for deep vein thrombosis.

Serious Fetal Problems

The following troubles may be witnessed in the fetus or placenta, but often may have serious consequences on the mother.

Ectopic Pregnancy (implantation of the embryo outside the uterus)

  • Caused by: Unknown, but risk components may encompass smoking, advanced maternal age, and earlier damage to the Fallopian tubes.

  • Treatment: If there is no immediate resolution, the pregnancy should be terminated either surgically or by the drug methotrexate.

Placental Abruption (separation of the placenta from the uterus)

  • Caused by: Several causes; risk factors encompass maternal stress, trauma, and drug use.

  • Treatment: Immediate delivery in case the fetus is mature (36 weeks or more), or if it is a younger fetus or the mother is under stress. In less dangerous cases with immature fetuses, the condition may be checked in hospital, with treatment if required.