Who has asthma?:
- Trouble breathing
- Tightness in your chest
- Chronic cough
How does pregnancy change asthma?:
Complications of Pregnancy From Asthma:
Treating Asthma in Pregnancy:
Will I have an astham attack in labor?:
As far as pain relief in labor goes, there are a few medications that are better than others, for example, your practitioner will probably choose fentanyl over morphine as an IV medication. Though if you are not planning a natural childbirth, an epidural may be your best choice for pain medication in labor. In general, having asthma is not a reason to have a scheduled cesarean.
Are asthma medications safe in pregnancy?:
The National Asthma Education and Prevention Program has guidelines on managing asthma in pregnancy. The guidelines recommend certain medicines for pregnant women, with others added if symptoms become more severe, noting that the lowest dose and frequency possible is always preferable and that an asthma specialist is critical on the team:
- Mild, intermittent asthma (symptoms fewer than 2 twice a week): A rescue inhaler.
- Mild, persistent asthma (symptoms fewer than 7 days a week): Daily low dose inhaled steroid,
- Moderate, persistent asthma (intermittent daily symptoms): Daily low dose inhaled steroid plus a long-acting bronchodilator, or daily medium-dose inhaled steroid
- Severe, persistent asthma (symptoms all day): Daily, high dose, inhaled treatment and possibly treatment with oral steroids
Together with your practitioner and your asthma team you can find the right medication regimen for your type of asthma and symptoms to protect you and your baby.
Managing Asthma During Pregnancy: Recommendations for Pharmacologic Treatment. National Asthma Education and Prevention Program. Accessed 1/6/10.
Williams Manual of Obstetrics: Pregnancy Complications. 22nd Edition. McGraw-Hill. 2007.