Physiological changes in pregnancy induce profound alterations in the woman's body. Pregnant women undergo several adaptations in many organ systems. Some adaptations are secondary to hormonal changes in pregnancy, while others occur to support the gravid woman and her developing fetus.
Some of the Physiological Changes in Pregnancy include,
The earliest sign of pregnancy and the reason most pregnant women initially see a physician is missing a menstrual period. Pregnancy causes physiologic changes in all maternal organ systems; most return to normal after delivery. In general, the changes are more dramatic in multifetal than in single pregnancies. Pregnancy is a normal phenomenon during which you will experience different and new emotions.
- Increased maternal fat and total body water.
- Decreased plasma protein concentrations, especially albumin.
- Increased maternal blood volume, cardiac output, and blood flow to the kidneys and uteroplacental unit, and decreased blood pressure.
- The maternal blood volume expansion occurs at a larger proportion than the increase in red blood cell mass, which results in physiologic anemia and hemodilution.
- Other physiologic changes include increased tidal volume, partially compensated respiratory alkalosis, delayed gastric emptying and gastrointestinal motility, and altered activity of hepatic drug metabolizing enzymes.
Common Body Changes in Pregnancy
Swelling of the Hands and Feet
Darkening of the Skin