COVID-19, Pregnant Women and Their Hard- Wired Worry
In our day to day obstetric practice, we face a number of concerns raised by the pregnant women regarding their health. Some of the frequently asked queries include: if they would develop health problems like high blood pressure and/or diabetes; if they would have a normal delivery or would require an intervention in the form of cesarean section or instrumentation, if they would have the birth experience as they envision and if the stress is harmful during the ongoing pregnancy. Every pregnant woman strives her best to give birth to a healthy child. As every pregnancy is a period of uncertainties and risks, pregnant women are anxious about their well-being and that of their baby. The list of concerns is endless with the addition of corona virus disease (COVID-19).
If we look back into the past, viral infections such as influenza, H1N1, and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) caused immense maternal and fetal complications during pregnancy. Due to compromised, pregnant women are more vulnerable to being infected. SARS-CoV-2 is a new strain of corona virus that is similar to Middle East Respiratory Syndrome corona virus (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV). These viruses spread primarily by coughing and sneezing or direct contact. Most patients infected with any one of these three strains of corona virus may remain asymptomatic or may develop relatively mild symptoms such as fever, cough and fatigue. However, some may develop severe forms of the disease leading to pneumonia and respiratory failure; requiring oxygen or other respiratory support. Pregnant women infected with MERS-CoV or SARS-CoV were at high risk of developing severe pneumonia; heart failure and other complications which could be life-threatening leading to death in many cases.
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Copyright (c) 2020 Arati Shrestha
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