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Embolic disease 

Embolic disease
Chapter:
Embolic disease
Author(s):

Raman Sivasankar

and Sarah Harries

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199572144.003.0018
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date: 20 November 2017

• Women are 2–5 times more likely to develop a deep vein thrombosis or suffer a pulmonary embolism during or immediately after pregnancy • Malaria and sickle cell disease are additional risk factors • Clinical suspicion of thrombo-embolism should be investigated further and treated with a safe anticoagulant regimen during pregnancy and for at least 6 weeks postpartum • Subcutaneous heparin injection is the mainstay of treatment antenatally, whilst warfarin may be used postpartum • Delivery should be planned in advance when a woman is receiving anticoagulant treatment as she is at significant risk of bleeding • Regional anaesthetic techniques are contra-indicated if the clotting screen is abnormal • Thrombo-prophylaxis should be given to all mothers following caesarean section according to body weight • Amniotic fluid embolism and massive air embolism are rare complications of delivery.

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