Many changes take place in a woman’s body during pregnancy, some more obvious than others.
In the early stages, it is mainly hormonal with increased levels of estrogen and progesterone.
With the arrival of the growing fetus in the womb and the ever demanding needs of the placenta, the body’s metabolism has to work overtime to keep up.
As the pregnancy progresses it is the body’s anatomy that changes form, while the uterus expands, pushing down on the bladder and the breasts naturally enlarge.
The various joints often swell as weight increases and all internal organs are squashed to make room for the baby growing inside.
From a medical point of view the changes induced by gestation have implication not only to the blood system but also much more significantly the heart.
These cardiovascular changes make a pregnant female a very unique subject in terms of regular medical procedures and especially if anesthetic procedures needed to take place.
A woman’s blood pressure is checked on a regular basis during her pregnancy. Whilst certain pressures stay constant and others actually decrease, femoral venous pressure gradually increases as the nine months pass by.
Systemic arterial pressure should remain the same, but if it alters, other tests would need to be carried out to ensure that the pregnancy is proceeding normally.
Many pregnant women will have to take iron and folic acid supplements to replace the decrease in the concentration of haemoglobin in the blood. The latter’s volume will increase at the start of gestation and progressively until you are 33 weeks when the blood volume will remain.