Facebook Pixel

Pregnant Women at Higher Risk for Influenza Complications

Rate This
Lung Conditions related image

In response to the recent swine flu outbreak, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued new guidelines for physicians this week regarding pregnant women and children who may have this virus. They base their recommendations on observations from previous influenza pandemics since there are currently so few cases of the new swine flu, especially in pregnant women.

Pregnant women and children are among those at high risk for serious complications from flu infections, according to the CDC. Their findings indicate that some pregnant women may become sicker more quickly and develop more severe flu symptoms complicated by bacterial infections such as pneumonia.

Severe cases of the flu can be serious for both the mother and fetus, so the CDC recommends that pregnant women who have flu symptoms should immediately see a physician for treatment and be tested to determine which flu strain is causing the infection.

The swine flu virus is highly treatable, and pregnant women and those who are breastfeeding should receive the standard medications, says the CDC. Early treatment, within 48 hours of symptoms, provides the greatest benefit.

Pregnant women can reduce their risk of infection by taking the common steps that prevent any respiratory infection: wash your hands well and often, avoid sick people and keep your hands away from your eyes, nose and mouth.

Article Links:
CDC, “Swine Flu,”: http://www.cdc.gov/swineflu/
CDC, “Interim Guidance—Pregnant Women and Swine Influenza, Considerations for Clinicians,” http://www.cdc.gov/swineflu/clinician_pregnant.htm

Related Article:
Parker-Pope, T., “The Symptoms of Swine Flu,” New York Times, April 29, 2009.

EmpowHer Links: Check out more on influenza and the swine flu:

(Information summarized by Darlene Jenkins, Ph.D.)

Add a Comment2 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

does the swine flu harm the unborn baby ? and if so how bad ?

April 29, 2009 - 7:02pm
(reply to Anonymous)

This particular strain of the virus is so new that we don't know much about it. The concern expressed in this article was for the vulnerability of pregnant women to possible infection. It stands to reason that their immune systems would be compromised, due to hormonal changes, such that it would be easy to succumb to infectious disease.

More information: Swine Flu Q&A

April 29, 2009 - 7:58pm
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

Lung Conditions

Get Email Updates

Lung Conditions Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!