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What are the risks if you get pneumonia during pregnancy? See what the experts say

Pregnancy is a special time in a woman’s life when her body undergoes many physical changes that can affect her immune system and overall health and make her more susceptible to infections. Pneumonia, an infection that causes air sacs in one or both lungs to swell, poses a particular risk during this time. According to Dr Kritika Ramdin, an obstetrician and gynecologist at SRV Hospital – Goregaon, “Pregnant women exposed to pneumonia experience more severe symptoms than non-pregnant individuals.”

“This is because the growing uterus can put pressure on the diaphragm, leading to reduced lung capacity and difficulty breathing which hinders the supply of oxygen to the body. Hormonal changes and changes in immune function of the body It can impair the baby’s ability to fight pathogens. It can also have harmful effects on the developing fetus because pneumonia can reduce the baby’s oxygen supply, potentially leading to fetal distress, premature birth, and even death. ​​​​​​​In severe cases, intrauterine death may also occur. In severe conditions, pregnant women may face complications such as septic shock, respiratory failure and may even require ventilatory support, prolonged stay in hospital and ICU. . These complications can have serious consequences for both the mother and the unborn baby. People who have known cases of bronchial asthma have a greater harmful effect,” she said. Added.


Dr Paparao Nadakuduru, MD, Internal Medicine at Citizen Specialty Hospital, Hyderabad, said, “Pneumonia is a lung infection that can be a cause for concern if it develops during pregnancy. While it can affect pregnant women in the same way as non-pregnant women, -May affect pregnant persons.” , there are unique considerations and potential risks that need to be addressed.”

Talking about the symptoms she said, “When pneumonia occurs during pregnancy, the symptoms are similar to those experienced by non-pregnant individuals. These symptoms include fever, cough, chest pain, difficulty in breathing. and cough with mucus. However, due to pregnancy-related changes in the body, some symptoms, such as shortness of breath, may be more pronounced.”

Measures to prevent pneumonia for pregnant women:

Management of pneumonia in pregnant women is challenging due to the limited number of safe medications and treatment options. However, there are preventive measures that can reduce the risk of pneumonia during pregnancy, as suggested by Dr. Kritika Ramdin.

  • Annual flu vaccination is recommended for pregnant women, as influenza can increase the risk of pneumonia.
  • Proper hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette can help prevent the spread of infection.
  • It is important to avoid close contact with sick individuals to reduce the risk of exposure to pathogens.
  • Early diagnosis and appropriate treatment by a gynecologist and chest physician is extremely essential to ensure the best possible outcome for both mother and baby.

Additionally, Dr Poojan Parikh, Consultant, Pulmonary Medicine, Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital, said, “Frequent hand washing, regular exercise, nutritious food, non-smoking, avoiding contact with sick patients are some of the ways to reduce the risk.” There are certain ways.” Pneumonia is happening. Flu vaccination is also one of the important components of preventing pneumonia infection. The flu vaccine can also protect a baby from flu for up to 6 months after birth. If someone gets cold or flu during pregnancy, she should consult a doctor as soon as possible. possible. Complications can be prevented by diagnosing and treating the disease early. Early diagnosis, antimicrobial therapy, vaccination have reduced the risk of complications in pregnant women. Most women who receive prompt treatment do not experience complications and will have a healthy pregnancy and newborn.”

Management of Pneumonia during Pregnancy:

Dr. CS Maitreyi who is Senior Consultant – Obstetrics and Gynecology Madhukar Rainbow Children’s Hospital, Delhi said, “Pneumonia must be diagnosed and treated early to prevent complications. Difficulty in breathing, fever, cough and chest pain are common symptoms in pregnant mothers. Blood tests and chest X-ray are useful diagnostic tools.”

“Treatment of pneumonia during pregnancy depends on the type of infection. If someone has bacterial pneumonia, doctors usually prescribe antibiotics. It is generally safe to take antibiotics during pregnancy, but ask your doctor about the specific antibiotic recommendation. It’s important to talk to a doctor. If someone has viral pneumonia, there is no specific treatment, but a doctor may recommend over-the-counter medications to relieve your symptoms. Also, in some cases, supportive care. “May require hospitalization, such as oxygen therapy,” she added.

Monitoring and Support:

Dr. Paparao Nadakuduru said, “Pregnant women suffering from pneumonia require close medical supervision. They may require supplemental oxygen, intravenous fluids and medications to reduce fever and ease symptoms. Health Care The team will carefully assess the condition of the mother and baby during the treatment process.”

Post-pneumonia care:

According to Dr. Paparao Nadakuduru, “After recovering from pneumonia, pregnant women should continue regular prenatal care to monitor the health of both the mother and the fetus. To address any potential complications or long-term respiratory problems Is necessary.”

Pneumonia during pregnancy is a serious concern that requires immediate medical attention. Early diagnosis and appropriate treatment are important to protect the health of the mother and the developing fetus. Early intervention and effective management can help reduce the risks associated with pneumonia, ensuring a healthy pregnancy and positive outcomes for both mother and baby.

(Disclaimer: The information provided in the article, including treatment suggestions shared by doctors, is for general informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified person regarding any medical condition. healthcare provider for any questions you may have regarding.)

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