Medical Problems in Pregnancy
Every year a small number of women in the UK die in pregnancy or the puerperium. 50 years ago the main causes of maternal death were obstetric problems such as postpartum haemorrhage. Now, however, the main causes of maternal death are medical complications rather than obstetric and include cardiac problems, neurological disease, sepsis and thromboembolism (CMACE 2011). In this most recent report, substandard care was identified as a contributor in many cases.
This module is primarily designed for trainees in Core Medicine, but will also be of use to others in ACCS (Acute Care Common Stem), Obstetrics and Anaesthesia. Trainee physicians only encounter pregnant women occasionally and may not have a working knowledge of either the dynamic physiology of pregnancy or the effect this has on interpretation of examination findings and laboratory investigations. This may lead to a delay in the timely and appropriate management of the acutely unwell pregnant woman.