ACOG Guidelines Issued for Thromboembolism in Pregnancy

Posted by: admin on: February 17, 2012

Pregnancy causes increased venous pooling in the lower limbs, which coupled with higher coagulability of the blood makes one prone for an embolism. Read this article to know more.


Pregnant women are at an increased risk of venous thromboembolism, which can be prevented, diagnosed, and managed according to clinical guidelines published in the September issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Andra James, M.D., from the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C., and the Committee on Practice Bulletins-Obstetrics from the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology provided information on the risk factors, diagnosis, management, and prevention of thromboembolism, particularly venous thromboembolism during pregnancy.

The investigators reported that the risk of thromboembolism is higher during the first week postpartum than during pregnancy. Swelling and pain in extremities suggest new-onset venous thrombosis, and initial diagnostic test should be compression ultrasonography of the proximal veins. Management of venous thromboembolism requires therapeutic anticoagulation with unfractionated heparin or low molecular weight heparin (LMWH), which is compatible with breast-feeding, and can be resumed four to six or six to 12 hours after vaginal or cesarean delivery, respectively, to minimize postpartum bleeding.

The prevalence and severity of this condition during pregnancy and the peripartum period warrant special consideration of management and therapy,” the authors write.


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