COVID-19 Impacts on Pregnancy

How Does COVID-19 Impact Pregnancy?

During pregnancy, women experience a partial immune suppression, which makes them more vulnerable to viral infections. The COVID-19 epidemic may have dire consequences for pregnant women as the virus continues to spread throughout California, and the United States more broadly.

As COVID‐19 continues to spread, more infections in pregnant women are likely to develop. As we closely monitor the virus, we recommend that pregnant women and their families, as well as the general public and healthcare providers, keep themselves informed: Wash your hands throughly and often, practice social distancing when able, and stay away from vulnerable communities like the elderly, those with autoimmune disorders, and others.

Here are a few ways to manage COVID‐19 in pregnancy:

COVID-19 Preventative Measures

COVID19 lasts about 2‐14 days, but infected persons can transmit the virus via close contact before they become symptomatic. Physiological changes in the immune and respiratory system can impact pregnant women more susceptible to COVID‐19 infection as the pandemic continues to spread. No cure or vaccine is available at the moment.

We advise pregnant women especially to:

  • Not engage in unnecessary travel
  • Stay away from crowds
  • Avoid public transportation
  • Practice social distancing, especially around sick people
  • Most importantly, practice and maintain good personal and social hygiene
    • wash your hands thoroughly throughout the day
    • clean surfaces like counter tops, tables, work spaces, door knobs, etc.

Reaching A Diagnosis

The main symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, fatigue, dry cough, and shortness of breath. If you feel that you have all the symptoms present, do not go to your primary care physician’s office, pharmacy, or hospital. Instead, call your doctor before seeking care to report that you have symptoms of COVID-19. The doctor’s staff then has time to protect themselves and others from possible infection prior to your visit.

Managing The Virus

If you are a pregnant women who thinks they have COVID‐19, get tested by health professionals. Those diagnosed with the virus should be admitted to an isolation ward in a designated hospital to manage critically-ill obstetric patients.

Sourced material:

Interim guidance issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on managing COVID-19, which include recommendations specific to pregnant women mostly drawn from previous coronavirus outbreaks.

Click here to read some helpful tips from the Harvard Medical School if you are pregnant and you are worrying about COVID-19 or want to know more preventative measures.

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