If you have congenital heart disease, it doesn’t mean that a healthy
pregnancy is out of your reach. With proper cardiac care and support from your
maternity hospital, you can have a healthy pregnancy and delivery. Read on to find out how
to have a healthy pregnancy when you have congenital heart disease.
Consult with Your Doctors Early and Often
Ideally, women with
congenital heart disease should not have unplanned pregnancies. If you are considering starting
a family, talk to your cardiac care specialist, OBGYN, and primary care
doctor to determine if you are healthy enough to start trying to become
pregnant now or if there are specific goals you should try to achieve
before your pregnancy. It may be necessary to make adjustments to your
medications, for instance, before you can safely conceive. After you become
pregnant, see your doctors regularly for prenatal care and for monitoring
of your heart condition. Your doctors will decide how often you need appointments
based on your overall health and the severity of your heart condition.
Be Aware of the Risks
The specific health risks you could face during pregnancy depend on the
nature of your condition. It’s common for blood pressure to increase
during pregnancy, which can take a toll on your heart. Some women have
an increased risk of arrhythmias and heart failure. Be aware that some
of the effects of pregnancy can mimic symptoms of a heart problem, such
as fatigue and shortness of breath. Ask your cardiac care specialist to
tell you what symptoms you should look out for, and don’t hesitate
to call your doctors if you are concerned.
Make a Delivery Plan
Birthing Center at Good Samaritan Hospital
uses the latest technology to ensure that all of our mothers-to-be have
the safest possible labor and delivery. For renowned maternity care in
San Jose, contact us at (888) 724-2362 to request a referral to a maternity
specialist or to schedule a tour of our Birthing Center.
As any expectant mother would, you should make a plan for labor and delivery
with your maternity hospital. Most women with heart disease can have a
vaginal delivery, so you should be sure to discuss your pain management
options. You should also understand what extra steps could need to be
taken during labor and delivery to keep your heart safe.