Posted Feb 25, 2014

Pregnancy-related backaches afflict women with low mobility more than those who exercise regularly, said the head of the 20th Annual Seminar of Rheumatology Research Center. Ahmad Reza Jamshidi said that most pregnant women suffer from localized backaches due to weight gain during pregnancy, adding that knee and back pains among women who have had less mobility before pregnancy are greater than those engaging in steady physical activities, ILNA reported.

He noted that risk-free exercises and physiotherapy can reduce back, spine and knee pains considerably.

Jamshidi explained that as pregnant women experience a weight gain of about 10 kilograms, which also is also mostly concentrated on particular points of body (in the belly), their back, spine and knees come under pressure.

He added that boosting back muscles and quadriceps femoris muscle can cut the pains resulting from the extra pressure on back.

Explaining that the use of painkillers is not recommended during pregnancy, he added that appropriate body posture in daily activities will be effective in alleviating such pains. He said that women who suffer from rheumatism, should refer to specialists a couple of months before becoming pregnant. “Pregnancy can intensify rheumatism,” he added. “Some rheumatic drugs are also harmful for the embryo.”

The effects of pregnancy on rheumatic diseases vary. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and APS typically are modified by pregnancy. For instance, symptoms of RA often improve in pregnant patients, frequently resulting in a reduced need for medication, but may flare up after delivery.

The relationship between lupus activity and pregnancy is more debated. In general, there is a tendency for mild to moderate flares, especially during the second half of pregnancy and the post-partum period. However, most of these flares do not endanger the mother’s or the baby’s life, nor do they substantially alter the long term prognosis of lupus. A prolonged period of clinical remission before conception decreases the chance of a flare during pregnancy.

Antiphospholipid syndrome (APS), increases the risk of clots in veins and arteries as well as obstetric complications such as miscarriage, prematurity or hypertension (high blood pressure) during pregnancy. When combined with kidney disease, the possibility exists for pre-eclampsia. Pre-eclampsia and eclampsia are conditions that may damage the mother’s kidneys and liver and also increase the risk of prematurity or death of the fetus. Thus, for women with APS, pregnancy–especially the time around delivery–is a particularly dangerous period and dictates special care.

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