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Blood Pressure in pregnancy - should I be worried? Any MWs out there...

(22 Posts)
schmee Fri 27-May-11 20:25:09

I've just looked in my notes and seen that my blood pressure has gone from 105/60 at the start to 140/78 at 32 weeks (steadily rising with a bit of a jump in the past few weeks). I think the classic figure for high blood pressure is 140/90 but if either figure is that high, or there has been a jump of over 30 for the top figure and 15 for the other, it could be serious?

I haven't had any protein in my urine. My vision is disturbed (lots of floaters, bit blurry, occasional brightly coloured lights) but I figured this was a normal pregnancy thing.

No-one's really looked at my notes properly since about 22 weeks as the only appointments I've had have been to discuss birth options (so I haven't seen a midwife) and I don't know if I should be getting concerned.

My mother had huge problems with pregnancy hypertension and had to be induced early. In my last pregnancy I think my BP went up to 135/90 but it wasn't pre-eclampsia. I had a c-section at 37 weeks (for other reasons) last time.

Would appreciate any advice out there..

bigbumum Fri 27-May-11 20:32:18

I think that BP is ok actually.
Thing is, your heart has an increased work load in pregnancy and so naturally increases in order to do this. So its actually a normal response.

as i recall, they didnt worry about mine till it was sort of 190/98 at an antenatal appointment at 35 weeks.

Could be wrong and folk who know will be along. Im a general nurse and as part of my job i deal with very abnormal BPs, i wouldnt be worried about yours tbh.


schmee Fri 27-May-11 20:34:24

Wow - 190/98. That puts mine in perspective a bit! Thank you! Hope everything went ok with your pregnancy.

bigbumum Fri 27-May-11 20:38:09

I had pre eclampsia, and had my baby at 37 weeks, he was tiny (5lbs 4oz) but perfectly formed, oh and very LOUD!! gringrin.
now a health 7 year old!

Even with a BP at 190/98 they took their sweet time, half heartedly started me on a couple of tabs, which didnt work, then i began to hullucinate, so they then induced me.
ended up very mcuh ok for me.
I worried about every single little twinge tbh. normali think xx

schmee Fri 27-May-11 20:40:56

Golly - hallucinations. Glad your boy was OK!

TabithaTwitchet Fri 27-May-11 21:03:51

I would try and speak to a midwife to be honest, especially if you have had visual disturbances.
I think that a BP that is high for you should be a reason to investigate - and you seem to have had quite a bit of an increase. Hopefully it is all OK, but makes sense to check it out.

aethelfleda Fri 27-May-11 21:28:00

Yeah, get an appointment with your midwife- if they are all booked up then try your GP, you will probably be fine but things can change fast sometimes so it's best to get checked out again. My friend had pre-eclampsia at 32 weeks and she felt really out of sorts with it quite quickly.
If you get any headaches over the weekend or your hands swell up, don't wait, ring the delivery ward at the hospital and they will get you in to check your Blood pressure there.

schmee Fri 27-May-11 21:34:38

Thank you. I will definitely watch out over the weekend.

AlpinePony Sat 28-May-11 06:49:15

I hope you're feeling OK today and if you're worried at all - call someone.

I started off like you, very low BP then suddenly at my 36 week appointment the shtf, I had protein in my urine and high BP which went up to 185/125! shock

I "felt" fine. No headaches, no visual disturbances - Yes, I had fat ankles but as an overweight pregnant woman in 30+ degree heat I thought that was "normal" so it hadn't worried about it. It's frightening how quickly PE can creep up on you when you are for all intents and purposes feeling absolutely fine.

My baby was born at 36+5 (emcs) and was another tiddler at 5lb 10oz - but again, absolutely perfect - but it's one of these things you've got to deal with quickly because the placenta starts to shut down. sad

There are a couple of turning points in the pregnancy when PE can "attack", I think it's 26 weeks, 32 weeks and 36 weeks - I'm sorry I can't remember for sure, but I know there are stages in the pregnancy where it can suddenly rear its ugly head.

hsurp Sat 28-May-11 07:05:15

If you are concerned, then make sure you tell your doctor! You will not be looked at as stupid or anything. That is high blood pressure, which I have learned is normal for pregnancy, but bring ANY concerns up to your DOCTOR! No matter how small it sounds!

schmee Sat 28-May-11 10:35:11

Thank you everyone - I'm going to see my midwife on Thursday, but I think I'll test my blood pressure at the GP's surgery (they have one of those machines in the waiting room) in the meantime to be on the safe side.

emmanumber3 Sat 28-May-11 10:47:48

By my standards you have low blood pressure smile. My booking in BP, at 8 weeks, was 140/95 and has floated between that and a record low for me of 130/78.

I too had pre-eclampsia in my first pregnancy but because my BP is naturally higher than most it didn't become very apparent until I was at 150/110. I was also induced when I started hallucinating at 37 weeks (having already been in hospital for 3 weeks - they were trying to get me to 38 weeks) my DS was, and is, fine and weighed a healthy 7lbs.

The thing about your post that I think warrants a check up is more the visual disturbances & lights you have been seeing. If it was just the BP you've mentioned I'd think it normal (good actually smile) but coupled with another symptom it's always worth a check up. Your midwife or GP won't think you're fussing about nothing - in fact I'm sure they'd rather know.

Best of luck grin.

schmee Sat 28-May-11 10:58:39

Thanks - I think the issue for me is that my blood pressure is normally very low, so it's been a big jump.

thejaffacakesareonme Sat 28-May-11 11:00:22

I'd phone the midwives for advice. I had PE in my first pregnancy and put down all my symptoms to just being pregnant and so didn't call the midwives. WHen I did see them I got a telling off for not calling them earlier. I wouldn't wait until THursday, PE can develop quite rapidly. Also, not everyone has all the symptoms. I'd wrongly assumed that because I didn't have visual disturbance that I couldn't have PE. It is also worth mentioning your Mum's history as one of the things that they take into account when assessing whether or not you are at greater risk for PE is whether or not there is a maternal history of it (I didn't find this out until I was pregnant with DS2 - no one asked me first time around).

Northernlurker Sat 28-May-11 11:04:56

The issue is not that your BP is high - overall it isn't - but it is higher for you. Have you actually mentioned the vision disturbance thing? If you haven't then you should. Is that any worse today?

reikizen Sat 28-May-11 11:19:44

I would always be concerned if the diastolic (bottom) number has risen by 15 or more from you booking blood pressure. Especially if you hare having visual disturbances and have a history of hypertension. Probably would have been better if you could have made an appt with your GP but it is now the weekend so I would ring your daycare/antenatal ward and see if they want you to go in for a BP profile (they will check your BP 4 times every half hour and do a full antenatal check). However, I would not be concerned that it is an emergency as your BP is not rocketing ( a diastolic of over 90 and I'd send you straight in), just high for you so I would be happy to see you on Monday if I was your midwife.

schmee Sat 28-May-11 11:24:58

It's the same today - nothing hugely dramatic, just blurry with masses of floaters and occasionally a pinpick or patch of electric blue.

I haven't had a midwife's appointment for about 12 weeks as I don't see my community midwife between 22 and 36 weeks.

BertieBasset Sat 28-May-11 11:53:08

The visual disturbances aren't good. You need to call either labour ward or a community midwife fo advice as it isn't normal, even though there may be nothing to worry about.

TooImmature2BMum Sat 28-May-11 11:56:33

Please call Triage and ask what they think. You don't want to take any risks with your baby, or yourself. The visual disturbances combined with the blood pressure may mean PE, or it may not, but better to be safe than sorry. And if you go in, make darn sure the MW checks your urine for protein. I had normal blood pressure but with intermittent protein in my urine and swelling throughout the last couple of weeks of my pregnancy, and when I went into labour the Triage MW didn't check my urine and my baby was stillborn. If she had checked, the chances are I would have been put on continuous monitoring and they might have picked up that my baby was in distress in time to do something about it. I don't mean to freak you out, but please get a medical opinion rather than posting online.

3littlefrogs Sat 28-May-11 11:59:25

Agree with everyone who says get in touch with labour ward.

It is the rise in BP from the baseline that is important, and the visual disturbances definitely warrant a check up asap.

aethelfleda Sat 28-May-11 12:06:10

Schmee, if you're getting patches/flashes in your vision with even a bit of blurriness, ring the labour ward today. Lke straight away.
floaters are OK but flashing lights with raised BP is something that really needs a professional to advise you, even if you've had them before you really should get a checkover. Preeclampsia can worsen in hours if it takes off, and you really need someone to see you today for proper (not on the internet!) advice so that you know you're OK and don't have blood pressure thats going through the roof. Don't wait til after the weekend, ring em. please.

schmee Thu 02-Jun-11 17:27:57

Just to say thank you everyone for your comments and advice. I've been to the midwife who said the blood pressure was fine (it's stayed the same) and wasn't worried about the visual disturbances as the urine test and the BP were ok. Phwew. But will keep a close eye on it, as I've got several more appointments coming up.

Thanks again.

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