Asthma is a chronic lung disease which inflames and narrows the airways in the lungs making breathing very difficult. Asthma also causes coughing and wheezing. It is necessary to treat asthma in time otherwise it creates life threatening conditions in the future.
Asthma is the most common and serious medical condition which can complicate pregnancy. In fact, asthma affects approximately 8 percent of women in their childbearing years. Many times Asthma is very risky for mother and baby if not treated on time. Hence it is necessary to control asthma during pregnancy.
Uncontrolled Asthma causes serious problem for mother such as:
- High blood pressure
- Premature delivery and rarely death
Uncontrolled Asthma causes serious problem for baby such as:
- Risk of stillbirth
- Fetal growth retardation
- Premature birth
- Low birth weight
- Low APGAR score at birth
Symptoms of Asthma in Pregnancy:
Asthma symptoms during pregnancy and in normal situations are same.
- Tightness in the chest
- Difficulty in breathing
- Shortness of breath
Causes of Asthma in Pregnancy:
Asthma causes are same during pregnancy and at any other time.
- Respiratory infections like flu, cold, bronchitis and sinusitis. Bacterial and viral infections also causes asthma
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease(GERD)
- Smoke from cooking or wood fires
- Food allergies
- Changes in climate specially in dry air and cold
- Allergy such as dust, feathers, pets and molds
- Allergy such as perfumes, sprays, soaps, shampoos and other chemicals.
Prevention of Asthma in Pregnancy:
Prevention is always better than cure. Pregnant woman should take good care of herself to avoid any complications during pregnancy.
- Regular consultation of expert pulmonologist is important during pregnancy. Pregnant woman should ask all doubts and concerns with the doctor.
- Medicines should be taken as per prescription only.
- Smoking and alcohol should be avoided completely.
- Avoid exposure to secondhand smoke as it can also cause asthma attack.
- Staying away from people who are suffering from flu, cold and cough.
- Avoid contact with allergic things such as dust, animals, foods, cloths and perfumes.
- Control gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Treatment of Asthma in Pregnancy:
- Medications: Medicines should be taken strictly as per prescription only. Some medicine can affect the baby’s health. During pregnancy, inhaled corticosteroids are the mainstay for long-term control. Long-term medications are sometimes combined into single preparations such as an inhaled steroid and a long-acting beta-agonist.
The anti inflammatory medicines are asthma controllers. It includes cromolyn, corticosteroids and leukotriene. In some cases, oral or corticosteroids injections are taken for few days throughout pregnancy in women with severe asthma.
- Fetal Monitoring: The type and frequency of fetal monitoring is based on gestational age and maternal risk factors in pregnant women with asthma. Ultrasound tests are performed before 12 weeks in case of slowing of fetal growth. Asthma patient should record all fetal activities accurately. There is a risk of maternal hypoxemia due to severe asthma attack. Hence continuous fetal heart rate monitoring is necessary along with assessment of mother’s lung functions. During delivery, most of the asthma women don’t face any problems due to the fetal monitoring system.
Pregnancy is very important part of every woman’s life. Today asthma is easily controllable with the help of advanced medical technology. Hence every asthmatic pregnant woman should enjoy the pregnancy instead of worrying.
Our latest and advanced Asthma treatments do not have any side effects on baby and mother.