Physiology and clinical course of asthma in pregnancy
- Steven E Weinberger, MD
Steven E Weinberger, MD
- Adjunct Professor of Medicine
- University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
- Executive Vice President and CEO Emeritus
- American College of Physicians
- Michael Schatz, MD, MS
Michael Schatz, MD, MS
- Clinical Professor, Department of Medicine
- University of California San Diego School of Medicine
- Section Editors
- Peter J Barnes, DM, DSc, FRCP, FRS
Peter J Barnes, DM, DSc, FRCP, FRS
- Editor-in-Chief — Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
- Section Editor — Asthma
- Professor of Medicine
- National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College, London
- Charles J Lockwood, MD, MHCM
Charles J Lockwood, MD, MHCM
- Section Editor — Obstetrics
- Senior Vice President, USF Health
- Dean, Morsani College of Medicine
- Professor, Obstetrics and Gynecology
- University of South Florida
Asthma is the most common pulmonary disease encountered during pregnancy, occurring in 3 to 8 percent of pregnant women [1-8]. Two questions about the interaction of asthma and pregnancy are raised by clinicians and patients alike:
●How does pregnancy affect asthma?
●How does asthma affect the outcomes of pregnancy?
The pathophysiology of asthma during pregnancy and the interrelationships of these two conditions will be reviewed here. The management of gestational asthma, the evaluation of dyspnea in pregnancy, and the changes in the respiratory system during pregnancy are discussed separately. (See "Management of asthma during pregnancy" and "Maternal adaptations to pregnancy: Physiologic respiratory changes and dyspnea".)
RESPIRATORY PHYSIOLOGY DURING PREGNANCY
A review of maternal respiratory physiology during pregnancy is helpful in understanding the interrelationships between pregnancy and asthma. More detailed discussions of the normal physiologic changes in the cardiopulmonary system during pregnancy are presented separately. This review will emphasize those changes that directly impact or are influenced by co-existent asthma. (See "Maternal adaptations to pregnancy: Physiologic respiratory changes and dyspnea" and "Maternal cardiovascular and hemodynamic adaptations to pregnancy" and "Maternal adaptations to pregnancy: Physiologic respiratory changes and dyspnea", section on 'Respiratory changes'.)
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- RESPIRATORY PHYSIOLOGY DURING PREGNANCY
- Maternal pulmonary function
- Maternal airway hyperresponsiveness
- Maternal arterial blood gases
- Fetal oxygenation
- EFFECTS OF PREGNANCY ON ASTHMA
- General trends
- Acute exacerbations
- EFFECTS OF ASTHMA ON PREGNANCY
- Complications of pregnancy
- Possible causes of adverse outcomes
- SOCIETY GUIDELINE LINKS
- INFORMATION FOR PATIENTS
- SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATIONS