‘Risks associated with dengue are high during pregnancy’
Dr. Rita Bakshi, senior gynecologist and IVF specialist, head of International Fertility Centre in a latest interview with India Today and other media states ‘risks associated with dengue are high during pregnancy’.
The risks associated with dengue may go up if pregnant women and newborn babies contract the disease. The new concern among gynecologists is the rise of miscarriages among pregnant women who are suffering from dengue.
Pregnant women are more likely to develop a severe form of the disease because their immune system is suppressed during pregnancy. If someone has contracted dengue during pregnancy, they should be rushed to hospital as soon as possible. There is a greater risk of complications such as pre-eclampsia, pre-term labour and having a low birth weight baby.
Dengue causes a drop in platelet levels. Hence, women who go into labour while having dengue are at an increased risk of heavy bleeding (haemorrhage), and extra blood should be kept ready in case transfusion is needed.
There’s no specific vaccine or antiviral treatment currently available for dengue. The main form of treatment is to suppress the symptoms.
Symptoms can usually be managed by taking paracetamol which is considered to be safe during pregnancy. Drinking plenty of fluids and resting can also help. Pregnant women may need to be monitored closely by their doctors. People with severe dengue need to be treated in hospital and given fluids via a drip to prevent dehydration and stabilise blood pressure.
If a pregnant woman has dengue at the time of giving birth, her newborn baby may also develop the disease during the first two weeks of life. Doctors claim that dengue in newborns can be extremely difficult to detect. If a baby has high fever, is irritated and fussy, sleepy or refusing to eat and has a rash, chances are high that it’s dengue. Those who are undergoing fertility treatment may also face difficulties if they contract the disease. Dengue may reduce the chances of success. It is recommended to postpone the fertility treatment cycles until the specialist recommends the woman to try again.
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