Pregnancy has its own share of good and bad. For the good part, it’s a bliss to know that you’re carrying something precious within you. For the bad part, you’ll have to deal with bodily discomfort, emotional distress, and even possible health complications.
Polyhydramnios, a type of maternal health condition, is one condition you should be wary of during the course of your pregnancy. Depending on the severity, the ailment can increase the risk of complications during pregnancy and delivery, leading even to perinatal morbidity and mortality.
Here, we have compiled everything you need to know about this condition. Learn about its possible causes, symptoms, treatments, and if whether it can be prevented. Read on to learn more about this condition.
Polyhydramnios – What Is it?
Polyhydramnios is a type of clinical condition defined by too much amniotic fluid within the amniotic sac during pregnancy. Normally, amniotic fluid is considered necessary for healthy fetal development.
Specifically, this is because the fluid serves as the protective cushion that surrounds the growing fetus in the womb. It also contains nutrients that give the fetus the opportunity to develop properly, and antibodies meant for fighting infection.
However, while amniotic fluid plays a vital role in keeping the fetus safe and healthy, too much of this liquid can lead to several complications that can affect both the mother and the baby.
For the mother, possible complications include preterm delivery, difficulty in breathing, increased bleeding after delivery, and postpartum hemorrhage. Meanwhile, for the baby, possible risks are congenital abnormalities, umbilical cord prolapse, abnormal size or positioning, birth defects.
Unfortunately, women with polyhydramnios often report minimal to no symptoms at all. In case there is, among the common signs they report include pain or discomfort in the abdomen as well as difficulty in breathing.
To diagnose a pregnant woman with polyhydramnios, doctors will need to conduct a physical exam, usually through the form of an ultrasound examination.
Other methods, include blood tests to check for maternal diabetes or infection, and a procedure called amniocentesis, which involves getting a small amount of amniotic fluid from the sac around the fetus for genetic analysis.
To date, the cause of Polyhydramnios is often unknown. However, in general terms, the ailment may develop due to varying reasons. Among which include maternal diabetes, multiple pregnancies, infection, anemia in the fetus, and others.
Polyhydramnios – Is there a Way to Prevent It?
The sad news, since the cause of polyhydramnios is often unknown, it cannot always be prevented. Even the ultrasound testing doesn’t promise a hundred percent accurate results.
However, frequent visits to the doctor and appropriate care before and after pregnancy is the best bet to ensure that you and your baby are safe and sound.
Treatments You May Take
Generally, mild to moderate polyhydramnios doesn’t necessitate any form of treatment other than monitoring.
However, in the rare occurrence that the condition becomes severe, doctors may need to provide medication and even do the necessary methods to drain the excess amniotic fluid from the sac.
The Bottom Line
While being pregnant comes with its own joy, the usual symptoms associated with its doesn’t make the course any less difficult. In some worse cases, others might even confront health conditions that may endanger their lives and their babies.
To prevent the latter from happening, it’s best to conduct a brief review of the most common maternal health conditions as early as today and learn about their symptoms, diagnoses, causes, and treatments.
For a safe pregnancy, be sure to reach out to your doctor as often as needed.