Gynaecologists have revealed that the stress of labour could trigger hypertension in women after childbirth, especially in those with risk factors that include having a family history of hypertension and kidney diseases.
According to them, untreated hypertension during or after pregnancy can lead to death.
The physicians who spoke during an interview with Punch said there was a huge knowledge gap among pregnant women about developing hypertension after delivery, noting that a lot of them are only aware of pregnancy-induced high blood pressure and not after delivery.
Oladapo Ladipo, a Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, said a woman without high blood pressure could develop it after childbirth.
Ladipo, who is the co-founder, Association for Reproductive and Family Health, advised that a woman who feels unwell after delivery should see a maternal health expert immediately, especially for signs of headache, lethargy or general weakness.
Speaking on the medical condition, the gynaecologist, Ladipo said, “It is true that a woman that just had a baby and doesn’t have high blood pressure before and during labour can suddenly develop postpartum hypertension.
“You can have it before, you can have it during labour and you can have it after delivery too. You can have high blood pressure at any time. It can suddenly start at any time. It is for the midwife or obstetrician to monitor and be on the lookout.”
The maternal health expert restated the need to monitor a new mum for high blood pressure after childbirth, noting that the clinical chemistry of the woman often determines whether she will have postpartum hypertension or not.
He explained, “If you are predisposed to hypertension, for example, you have a family history of hypertension, are obese, or even if you don’t have it, the stress of delivery can trigger it.
“The important thing is to diagnose and have it treated. A woman can have hypertension immediately after delivery.
“Anything can trigger it if you are predisposed to it. So, the stress of delivery can trigger hypertension in women who are predisposed to it. If left untreated, they could die from it. Hypertension could rupture the brain vessels and cause stroke.
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