When pregnancy increased blood clotting. Most likely, this occurs in the female body as a precautionary measure, allowing to avoid excessive blood loss during childbirth. Thus, the amount of protein responsible for coagulability increases. Is it dangerous for a pregnant woman to thicken the blood? Talk about the symptoms, risks, and prevention of hypercoagulation.
Why there is a risk increased blood clotting during pregnancy
Blood clots are formed by platelets at the site of tissue damage to reduce bleeding. But during pregnancy, under the action of estrogen, the blood thickens and a number of serious health problems can occur. It is not for nothing that experts call pregnancy a prothrombotic condition with a change in fibrinolysis (the ability to destroy blood clots). Pathology occurs most often in the first 3 months of pregnancy (about 50% of all cases occur in 15 weeks) or the first 6 weeks after delivery, affecting 1 or 2 pregnant women for every 2,000 people.
Signs of hypercoagulation
Rapid coagulation is a complication that is life-threatening. So, with increased blood clotting in some women occurs:
- Venous thrombosis, which is manifested by acute pain, convulsions and swelling in one or both legs, swollen veins, redness or blue skin, burning sensation in the affected area. It should be noted that the pain does not pass for a long time. It is interesting to note that approximately 80% of deep vein thrombosis occurs in the left leg. This is due to the anatomy of the blood supply to the legs and partly to the pressure of the uterus.
- Pulmonary embolism, which is characterized by shortness of breath, chest pain, aggravated by a deep breath, cough (sometimes with blood), rapid pulse, difficulty breathing, cyanosis and even loss of consciousness. This condition requires urgent hospitalization.
- Miscarriage due to antiphospholipid syndrome, in which blood clots form in the vessels supplying the developing embryo. As a result, the blood supply to the fetus is reduced, which leads to premature birth and less often to prenatal death of the child.
- Placental abruption is a condition in which the placenta detaches from the uterine wall partially or completely before delivery, causing severe bleeding that is dangerous for the mother and baby.
It is impossible not to say about such rare complications associated with bleeding disorders in pregnant women, such as myocardial infarction and stroke.
Women most at risk for thrombophilia are:
- over 35 years old;
- traveling long distances;
- who have already had miscarriages;
- with a genetic predisposition for thrombosis;
- with multiple pregnancies;
- after cesarean section;
- with hypertension or preeclampsia;
- leading a sedentary lifestyle.
Are there any tests for blood clots?
The doctor can scan the affected area using ultrasound or magnetic resonance venography. Also, the patient can be assigned phlebography. If a pulmonary embolism is suspected, a spiral CT scan (computed tomography) and an electrocardiogram of the heart are performed on the pregnant woman.
Ways to treat high blood clotting
Depending on the severity of the condition, your local obstetrician-gynecologist will refer you to a hematologist – a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of blood diseases. As a rule, pregnant women with pathology are prescribed anticoagulants (heparin is considered the safest) to prevent the formation of blood clots in the blood. Even if the diagnosis is only suspected, treatment is started immediately.
If blood clots are located closer to the skin’s surface, warm compresses, bandaging of the legs and lifting them to relieve swelling also help.
Prevention of the disease lies in maintaining an active lifestyle, regular exercise (with the consent of the doctor), improving blood circulation and preventing the formation of clots. The main goal is to maintain normal blood flow in the body. What experts recommend:
- eat healthy foods and avoid overweight;
- Do not smoke;
- drink more water;
- Do not sit without moving for more than 20 minutes. If you have to sit for a long time on a trip or at work, get up every half hour and move as far as possible;
- reduce salt intake;
- Try not to cross your legs when sitting.
Taking into account the life-threatening effects of increased blood clotting, a pregnant woman should follow all the doctor’s prescriptions!