Blood Pressure During Pregnancy

Dr. Barra O' Briain, MD, discusses blood pressure during pregnancy.

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Dr. Barra O' Briain, MD, discusses blood pressure during pregnancy.
Video transcript

Featuring Dr. Barra O;Briain, MD
Blood Pressure During Pregnancy
Duration: 2 minutes, 28 seconds

There's two kinds of high blood pressure events that can occur in pregnancy.

Women can come into – can become pregnant having already had high blood pressure, and being treated for high blood pressure prior to the pregnancy, and that we call preexisting high blood pressure, preexisting hypertension. You can also have blood pressure that evolves during the course of – your high blood pressure evolves during the course of the pregnancy usually after 20 weeks.

We call that gestational hypertension, and high blood pressure like whether your pregnant or not, is define by blood pressure that is above 140, which is the systolic or top number, and 90 being the diastolic or bottom number that you often see and/or hear talk about in medical shows and the like.

The implications of high blood pressure are significant, and it happens in about 7 percent of pregnancies, and can be a significant cause of prematurity because the moms get sick with their high blood pressure, and the baby may need to be delivered early. Preexisting high blood pressure has an effect on the development of the placenta and requires greater sort of observation in the latter stages of the pregnancy.

The gestational hypertension is the one that can occur quite suddenly, and that’s why we see women more frequently in the third trimester or the latter part of the pregnancy. And women can get quite sick, quite quickly, not all, but some can. And that is what our concern is as healthcare providers.

If women have high blood pressure in their pregnancy or have questions regarding high blood pressure and pregnancy, than the best person to speak to is their healthcare provider that’s taking care of them during that time.

Presenter: Dr. Barra O'Briain, Family Doctor, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Family Doctor

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.