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Overview of Disease During Pregnancy

By

Lara A. Friel

, MD, PhD, University of Texas Health Medical School at Houston, McGovern Medical School

Last full review/revision Oct 2021
CLICK HERE FOR THE PROFESSONAL VERSION

During pregnancy, having a disorder can increase the risk of problems. The disorder may be one that

  • Women had before they became pregnant (preexisting disorders)

  • Develops during the pregnancy but is not directly related to the pregnancy

  • Is more likely to occur during pregnancy

Diabetes Diabetes During Pregnancy For women who have diabetes before they become pregnant, the risks of complications during pregnancy depend on how long diabetes has been present and whether complications of diabetes, such... read more and high blood pressure High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy High blood pressure (hypertension) during pregnancy is classified as one of the following: Chronic hypertension: Blood pressure was high before the pregnancy. Gestational hypertension: Blood... read more are examples of preexisting disorders that increase the risk of problems during pregnancy. If women who have such a disorder wish to become pregnant, they should first talk with a doctor and try to get in the best physical condition possible before they become pregnant. After such women become pregnant, they may need special care, often from an interdisciplinary team. The team may include an obstetrician (who may also be a specialist in care of the disorder during pregnancy), a specialist in the disorder, and other health care practitioners (such as nutritionists).

Sometimes disorders that are not directly related to pregnancy develop during pregnancy. Some of them increase the risk of problems for pregnant women or the fetus. They include

Some disorders are more likely to occur during pregnancy because of the many changes pregnancy causes in a woman’s body. Examples are

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Test your knowledge
Postpartum Depression
Postpartum depression is a feeling of extreme sadness and related psychologic disturbances after delivery of a baby. Although it is common to feel sad or miserable within 3 days of delivery (the baby blues), these feelings usually go away within 2 weeks. Postpartum depression is a more serious mood change. Women in which of the following groups are at increased risk for this condition?
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