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Endocrine and autoimmune disorders 

Endocrine and autoimmune disorders
Endocrine and autoimmune disorders

Mirjana Kendrisic

and Borislava Pujic

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date: 26 November 2020

Advanced maternal age and increasing numbers of women of childbearing age with endocrine and autoimmune disorders have become the challenge for both anaesthetists and obstetricians. Genetic studies have provided new insight into underlying causes of endocrine disorders and prenatal prediction of inheritance. The expression of endocrine disease may influence the interpretation of diagnostic laboratory testing during pregnancy. Better understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms enables new therapeutic approaches which can compromise pregnancy outcome. Although only a small number of drugs have been shown through clinical studies to be safe for use in pregnancy, intensive therapy for chronic disease is usually needed. Thus, anaesthetic management of women with endocrine disorders in pregnancy has become more complex. The most frequently encountered endocrine disorders during pregnancy include gestational diabetes mellitus and thyroid and adrenal disorders. Gestational diabetes has become increasingly common in pregnant women. Not only does it influence pregnancy outcome, but it also carries a risk for mother and offspring of developing type 2 diabetes later in life. Intensive glucose control may prevent maternal and fetal complications and improve long-term outcome. Pregnancy itself has been found to influence the course of autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus. However, autoimmune diseases may have adverse consequences for maternal, fetal, and neonatal health. There is a relative paucity of literature concerning anaesthetic management of autoimmune diseases. Early recognition and immediate treatment of the common complications have been the key elements to achieving the ultimate goal—good pregnancy outcome.

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