Aside from the care expectant mothers need from their OB/GYN, they could benefit from seeking care from an orthopedic specialist. Pregnancy adds a great deal of stress on the woman’s body and can make or worsen joint and bone problems.
The weight and health of the mother before pregnancy may determine the severity of orthopedic conditions in which the mother faces.
Orthopedic For Expectant Moms
The most common orthopedic conditions seen in women who are expecting a child include:
Lower Back Pain
With the weight of the baby and the uneven distribution of weight, many pregnant mothers experience some kind of lower back pain. There is also the possibility of muscle fatigue in the mother which can lead to spasms.
In the early stages of pregnancy, back-strengthening exercises can help prepare for the physical changes ahead. Lower back pain may be difficult to deal with throughout the pregnancy however, most symptoms will go away following the delivery.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
When the median nerve in the wrist is pinched, carpal tunnel can develop. Pain, tingling, and numbness in the hand and fingers are all symptoms of carpal tunnel.
This condition can worsen or develop due to fluid retention as a result of pregnancy. If added weight is gained throughout the pregnancy, carpal tunnel syndrome can worsen and weight management may be discussed by your doctor.
Throughout the pregnancy, carpal tunnel treatment includes splints, cold compresses, and cortisone injections. Following delivery, almost always carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms will resolve.
When the thick band of tissue called the fascia becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis develops. The pain can be stabbing and is located in the heel and is usually a result of excess weight gain throughout the pregnancy.
The most effective treatments during pregnancy are home treatments with the use of ice, shoe inserts, and a foot massage. Symptoms may worsen in the morning, and if the pain is severe, cortisone shots can be administered to help ease the pain and aid with mobility troubles.
If an expectant mother is overweight, they may experience compression of the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve in which supplies sensation to the upper leg.
As the baby grows, numbness can occur on the thigh as pressure builds against the nerve. Sometimes, expectant mothers experience a tingling or burning sensation and cortisone injections are sometimes needed to resolve the symptoms. Like many of the other orthopedic conditions, meralgia paresthetica will usually resolve on its own after the delivery.
An inflammatory condition called osteitis pubis affects the bones located at the front of the pelvis. The major bones can become inflamed as a result of the added weight throughout the pregnancy.
Treatment for osteitis pubis consist of alternating ice and heat compresses, as well as anti-inflammatories. Resting can also help to reduce inflammation as well as minimize the groin pain.
Orthopedic treatment for women who are expecting can be beneficial. As the body endures many changes, our Atlanta orthopedic doctors can provide expectant mothers with a variety of treatment options while keeping the baby and mother safe. Call our office today at (404) 855-2141 for more information.