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Pregnancy Symptoms: What They Never Told You

Morning sickness isn't the only one. Here's a list of pregnancy symptoms you might not be expecting.
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Abnormal Pregnancy Symptoms

With so many changes taking place in your body, you may be tempted to dismiss any new discomfort as normal during pregnancy. But certain symptoms could signal a serious problem:

  • Bleeding or spotting - According to Lindsay, "bleeding or spotting is never felt to be normal during pregnancy." Spotting is common in the first trimester and probably not a cause for alarm. However, in the second and third trimester, bleeding could provide advance warning of a serious complication, such as preterm labor or problems with the placenta. Always report any bleeding or spotting to your doctor or midwife.
  • Severe itching - In the late second and third trimester, severe itching may signal a rare liver problem that sometimes develops during pregnancy, known as intrahepatic cholestasis. "This condition requires increased fetal surveillance and early delivery," Lindsay says.
  • Blurred vision, severe headaches and pain in the right side of abdomen - These symptoms, whether they occur alone or in combination, may indicate severe preeclampsia - the medical term for dangerously high blood pressure during pregnancy. "Women who experience any of these symptoms should contact their health care provider immediately," Lindsay advises. Early delivery may be necessary "to avoid life-threatening maternal and fetal complications."

 

Next Time Around

You may be wondering whether your pregnancy will be similar the next time around. Stein says you are no more or less likely to experience troubling pregnancy symptoms when a second or third child is on the way. But you may be too busy to dwell on the little things, she adds, "Since you'll be taking care of one child and growing another."

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Reviewed on February 23, 2009

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