Warning signs of stroke risk in pregnant women

May is stroke prevention month in the US, stroke is unlikely to be related to pregnancy, however stroke can occur during pregnancy with serious consequences.

For every 100,000 women who give birth, 2-70 of them will have a stroke. Stroke seems to be rare in pregnant women, but every year thousands of women have a stroke either during pregnancy or the first few weeks after giving birth. Notably, stroke causes 10% of all fetal-related deaths.

About 10% of pregnant women have a stroke before giving birth, while 40% occur during childbirth. The remaining 50% occurs after the baby is born, usually within six weeks of giving birth.

Warning signs of stroke risk during pregnancy

In general, the symptoms of a stroke during or after pregnancy are similar to the symptoms that cause any other stroke. However, some specific stroke symptoms during or after pregnancy can be a little different from those seen in typical strokes.

Consists of:

  • Headaches : Frequent headaches are a warning sign of an impending stroke. The first is a common sign of stroke caused by cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT). Usually headaches are more painful, or last much longer, than your typical headaches. You should go to the emergency room if you have such a headache along with double vision, fatigue, paralysis, and other common stroke symptoms. Another type of headache that prompts you to go to the emergency room right away is a severe headache.
  • Double vision : the vision is sometimes a symptom of stroke is rare, but it can occur in the CVT or cerebral artery was ruptured after enlargement. In both cases, these symptoms are often accompanied by headaches.
  • Dizziness or loss of balance: High blood pressure can affect the function of certain blood vessels in the posterior brain region, one of which controls our sense of balance. Women who develop high blood pressure during pregnancy are more likely to have a stroke or are at risk of having a stroke, whose first symptom is dizziness and/or lightheadedness. A stroke can also cause nausea or vomiting.
  • Blurred vision : Because the occipital lobes that handle vision-related functions in the brain are located in the posterior brain region, pregnant women with high blood pressure can also have blurred vision. This usually occurs as a result of reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy syndrome (RPLS).
  • Seizures : Any stroke can cause seizures. In fact, epilepsy is the first sign in a small percentage of strokes. However, seizures are a common symptom of reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy syndrome (RPLS) and hemorrhagic stroke, both of which can occur when you have high blood pressure. high. Although rare, a stroke with these symptoms can occur during or after pregnancy.
  • Lethargy and coma : Heavy bleeding or swelling inside the brain can lead to extreme drowsiness and/or coma. These signs can occur due to RPLS, CVT, high blood pressure, and other syndromes of stroke in pregnancy.

You must see your doctor when you start to notice these symptoms, so they can decide how to treat you.

Some risk factors for stroke

The risk factors for stroke during pregnancy are the same as those for general stroke – being older, being overweight, having migraines, smoking, and having heart disease.

However, certain factors increase the risk of stroke during pregnancy, such as gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension (high blood pressure), and bleeding after delivery. High blood pressure increases the risk of stroke. One-third of strokes during pregnancy are related to high blood pressure.


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