Orthopedic Conditions Seen During Pregnancy

Certain orthopedic conditions are commonly seen in pregnant women. Pregnancy places a significant burden on a woman's body, and there are some specific conditions that can occur.  Learn about these conditions seen during pregnancy and what you can do for treatment.


pregnant back pain
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It makes sense that low back pain is the most common orthopedic complaint during pregnancy. More than half of all pregnant women experience significant back pain during pregnancy. The extra weight of the baby, and the awkward distribution of weight causes muscle fatigue and spasm in the back. While treatment can be difficult during pregnancy, problems seldom linger after delivery. Having a strong back before becoming pregnant can help your body prepare for the weight of the baby.



pregnant hands
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Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition that compresses one of the important nerves in the wrist. Typically patients with carpal tunnel syndrome complain of pain, tingling and numbness in the fingers. Treatment can usually be accomplished with simple steps including night splints.  Almost always the symptoms of carpal tunnel improve in these mothers following delivery of their baby.



feet pregnant plantar fasciitis
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Plantar fasciitis is a condition that causes pain under the heel of the foot. Often referred to as a heel spur, plantar fasciitis is often associated with rapid weight gain. During the later stages of pregnancy when women gain more weight, symptoms of plantar fasciitis may become bothersome.  Simple treatments may include ice application, shoe inserts, and foot massage.  Medications should be used only under the direction of your physician.



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Meralgia paresthetica is an unusual condition in most people, but it is quite common during pregnancy. When the baby grows, he may press against a nerve that provides sensation over the outside of the thigh. Some people develop numbness over a patch of skin over the thigh as a result of this nerve compression.  Meralgia paresthetica is seen more commonly in people who wear tight belts or waistbands, and lie other conditions will generally resolve after delivery of the baby.



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Osteitis pubis is an inflammatory condition of the pelvis. The pelvic bones are joined in the front at the pubic symphysis. This joint can become inflamed in certain conditions, including pregnancy. Osteitis pubis usually improves with rest.



hip pain
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Another hip condition associated with late-term pregnancy is transient osteoporosis. This condition causes abnormal bone weakening of the ball of the ball-and-socket hip joint. Treatment may involve the use of crutches or a walker to relieve weight on the affected bone.  Transient osteoporosis is a condition that causes concern that the hip bone becomes weakened until the problem has resolved, that's why your doctor may recommend limiting the amount of weight placed on the affected limb.


Common Orthopedic Conditions of Pregnancy

The good news is that these conditions almost always resolve after delivery. Therefore, the usual treatment of these conditions is to support the pregnant mother with simple, non-invasive treatments, until after delivery. In the rare circumstance where symptoms persist even after delivery, further treatments could be considered.

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