Pregnancy induced high blood pressure is not unusual
in pregnancy. Even if you had normal blood pressure
before conception or in early pregnancy, there is
a chance of you developing hypertension during the
later part of the pregnancy period. A slight rise
is considered normal and usually occurs after week
28 and goes away after baby is born. It cannot be
felt because there are no symptoms to hypertension
but BP readings can reflect the severity as outlined
• Mild high BP is a diastolic pressure between
90 and 99
• Moderate high BP is a diastolic pressure
between 100 and 109
• Severe high BP is a diastolic pressure above
A slight rise in the systolic level is not as bad
as a rise in diastolic pressure; however if the
systolic level shoots to above 160 level then you
have reason to worry. High BP harms the mother's
organs and causes low birth weight or preterm delivery.
In its most severe form, it can trigger preeclampsia
which is life threatening for both mother and baby.
• You have gestational high BP if your reading
is at 140/90 or higher but there are no traces of
protein in your urine. It can progress to preeclampsia
- which would mean there is a rise in your BP level
and now you have protein in your urine and other
symptoms that merit your doctor's immediate attention
and close supervision.
• If you develop mild version of this problem
at week 37 or later, chances of labor being induced
or a possible c-section will be on the cards.
• If you have not hit week 37, you will be
hospitalized and if everything is going ok with
both mother and baby, you will be discharged and
but put on bed rest and closely monitored with nonstress
tests, ultrasounds and daily kick counts.
• If your case is severe, then you may require
to be hospitalized until delivery.
• If you are at week 34 and beyond you will
be induced or undergo a c-section.
• If your pregnancy is not mature enough you
will be given corticosteroids which will help speed
up the development of baby's lungs and stall other
problems. If baby is responding well to the drug
and you are in no danger, with close monitoring,
your delivery will be postponed to a later date
until baby is more mature.
There isn't much you can do to prevent gestational
hypertension during pregnancy apart from controlling
your weight and including moderate exercises in
your daily routine.
Systolic and diastolic
blood pressure explained...
Blood pressure readings are given in 2 numbers.
The top number is systolic blood pressure
. It represents the maximum pressure
exerted when the heart contracts. The bottom number
is the diastolic reading
represents the pressure in the arteries when the
heart is resting. These pressure readings are measured
in millimeters of mercury or mmHg. An example of
how it is recorded: 110 over 70 (110/70), where
110 is the systolic reading and 70 the diastolic
reading. You are considered to be having high blood
pressure if your systolic reading is at 140 and
above and the diastolic pressure reading is at 90