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Prenatal care and careful monitoring of blood pressure and other factors are important. Women with high blood pressure often need to continue taking their antihypertensive medication. Your doctor may switch you to a safer antihypertensive medication during pregnancy.
In 2006, an article in the New England Journal of Medicine discussed the relationship between ACE inhibitors, medications used to control blood pressure, and the occurrence of congenital birth defects. Researchers determined that women taking ACE inhibitors were about three times as likely to deliver a baby with congenital defects as women who were taking some other type of medication for high blood pressure.
Because of this, ACE inhibitors are not recommended in the second and third trimesters. Talk with your doctor if you are currently taking an ACE inhibitor for hypertension.
If pregnancy causes your blood pressure to rise, there are some steps you can take to keep it under control:
Exercise and maintain what your doctor tells you is a proper weight.
If your doctor suggests it, get a home blood pressure cuff, take your blood pressure regularly, and report any high readings.
Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.
Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.