Lung disease and pregnancy.

José Pedro Boléo-Tomé


The presence of underlying respiratory disease in the pregnant woman may implicate complications for the mother and the foetus which are potentially fatal. Pregnancy may also alter the course of the disease, making it fundamental to recognise and prevent its progression. It is important to know the respiratory physiology during pregnancy, in order to better preview the behaviour of these illnesses. In this article, a review of the current literature was performed on some the respiratory diseases that affect the pregnant woman, but are not specifically caused by it. Among these, asthma is one of the most important, given its frequency and the possibility to obtain good control and prevent complications. The frequent under-medication of these patients is one of the main causes of exacerbation and complications; it is therefore necessary to know the safety profile and current indications for the medications used in its treatment. Thromboembolic disease is another very frequent cause of morbidity and mortality, and its diagnosis implicates a major challenge, needing a very high suspicion. Diagnostic exams, namely radiological, are not to be postponed, and the radiation dose used is safe for the foetus.

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