What is a Blood Pressure Pregnancy Chart?
Throughout pregnancy, the body undergoes significant changes to accommodate the growth and development of the fetus. Maintaining a regular blood pressure reading during these nine months is crucial. Blood pressure measures the force of blood against artery walls in two values. The systolic number indicates the arterial pressure during the heartbeats, whereas diastolic indicates the pressure between heartbeats. Elevated pressure can lead to high blood pressure readings, known as hypertension, while decreased pressure may result in low blood pressure readings, known as hypotension.
The presence of hypertension during pregnancy is a cause for concern and requires close monitoring, as the potential risks can cause significant damage. Chronic hypertension, chronic hypertension with superimposed preeclampsia, gestational hypertension, and preeclampsia are all high blood pressure issues associated with pregnancy.
The utilization of a blood pressure pregnancy chart is common and essential in the delivery of safe and effective care for pregnant patients. By collating regular blood pressure results, a clear picture can be formed by analyzing the results against the recommended parameters. Abnormal blood pressure is known as a silent killer for its damaging risks yet undetectable symptoms. Therefore, regular charting of blood pressure measurements and applying any necessary medical interventions is paramount.
Blood pressure is typically categorized into five sections to help define parameters and severity, these remain the same for pregnant patients but may present different risks and symptoms compared to non-pregnant patients:
- Normal: Less than 120/80 mm Hg
- Elevated: Systolic between 120 and 129 mm Hg and diastolic less than 80 mm Hg
- Stage 1 hypertension: Systolic between 130 and 139 mm Hg or diastolic between 80 and 89 mm Hg
- Stage 2 hypertension: Systolic at least 140 mm Hg or diastolic at least 90 mm Hg
- Hypertensive Crisis: Exceeds 180 mm Hg systolic and 120 mm Hg diastolic.
How does it work?
Step One: Gather your Resources
Blood pressure charts are a valuable resource and essential to keep on hand. Make sure that you have one when the need arises by either clicking the “Download Template” or “Use Template” button or by searching “ Blood Pressure Pregnancy Chart” on Carepatron’s template library’s search bar on the website or app.
Step Two: Collate Essential Information
Fill out all essential patient information, including any relevant medical history that may impact the parameters. Gestation stage and previous blood pressure issues should be indicated. This form includes an easy-to-use common symptom section for hypertension and hypotension as well as the recommended parameters to make clear interpretations. From this, the need for medical intervention may arise.
Step Three: Store the Template Securely
After reviewing the results, you need to secure the blood pressure chart so that access is only granted to relevant parties. As blood pressure is a commonly recorded result, easy access to the blood pressure chart both by medical practitioner and patient is essential.
Ensure this through Carepatrons HIPAA-compliant free patient records software. Here all relevant medical records can be safely stored and collated for ease and security.
Blood Pressure Pregnancy Chart example (sample)
Want to make the most of this essential recording tool? Get a free, downloadable, and printable PDF of a completed blood pressure pregnancy chart.
We've crafted this template with simulated data to help you effectively use the chart and interpret normal blood pressure ranges for this specific population. It conveniently includes space for clinical notes and serves as an ongoing recording platform for both practitioners and patients during prenatal care.
You can access your copy by previewing the sample below or clicking the "Download Example PDF" button.
When would you use this chart?
Blood pressure tests are routinely used throughout pregnancy as a standard part of prenatal care. Monitoring blood pressure is crucial during pregnancy to detect and manage potential complications. Here are some common scenarios when blood pressure pregnancy charts are typically conducted:
Routine prenatal visits
Blood pressure is often measured at every prenatal appointment to ensure it remains within the normal range. This regular monitoring helps identify any significant changes early on and offers the opportunity to provide good preventive care.
First prenatal visit
Blood pressure is usually taken during the initial prenatal visit to establish a baseline measurement and solidify a normal level for the individual. This baseline helps healthcare providers identify abnormal levels in future consults and assists with the management of potential risks.
Women with pre-existing conditions such as chronic hypertension or gestational diabetes may require more frequent blood pressure monitoring to manage potential complications. This may be carried out at home with the levels being charted via a sharable and secure blood pressure pregnancy chart.
Previous pregnancy complications
If a woman has experienced complications related to high blood pressure in a previous pregnancy, monitoring may be more intensive in subsequent pregnancies with at-home, regular charting encouraged.
Signs of preeclampsia
Preeclampsia is a condition characterized by high blood pressure and other organ-related complications. Monitoring blood pressure is crucial for early detection and management of preeclampsia.
Symptoms of high or low blood pressure
If a pregnant patient experiences symptoms such as severe headaches, visual disturbances, abdominal pain, or swelling in the hands and face, healthcare providers may check blood pressure to assess if it's a result of abnormal blood pressure levels. The presence of hypertension and hypotension can put both patient and child at risk of a preterm pregnancy, placental abruption, and preeclampsia.
Should a pregnant patient be prescribed blood pressure medication, regular testing is required to monitor pressure levels to ensure that the intervention is effective.
In the third trimester
Blood pressure may be monitored more frequently in the third trimester as the risk of developing gestational hypertension or preeclampsia increases. Regular blood pressure tests help healthcare providers identify and manage any issues promptly, ensuring the well-being of both the mother and the baby.
What do the results mean?
Monitoring blood pressure is a crucial aspect of prenatal care. Blood pressure ranges vary between institutions yet are commonly divided into five key sections as outlined below:
- Normal Range: Blood pressure numbers below 120/80 mm Hg are considered normal. If the results fall within this range, maintain heart-healthy habits, including a balanced diet and regular exercise.
- Elevated: Elevated blood pressure is indicated through measures consistently ranging from 120-129 systolic and less than 80 mm Hg diastolic. Without intervention, individuals with elevated blood pressure are at risk of developing hypertension.
- Hypertension Stage 1: Hypertension Stage 1 is characterized by blood pressure consistently ranging from 130 to 139 systolic or 80 to 89 mm Hg diastolic. At this stage, healthcare professionals are likely to recommend lifestyle changes and may consider prescribing blood pressure medication based on the pregnant patient's risk of developing hypertension. The risk of less blood flow to the placenta, interrupted fetal growth, and premature delivery are all factors to consider.
- Hypertension Stage 2: Hypertension Stage 2 occurs when blood pressure consistently reads 140/90 mm Hg or higher. Healthcare professionals are encouraged to prescribe a combination of blood pressure medications and lifestyle changes at this stage. Hypertension may be present if the patient shows symptoms of flushed skin, swelling of hands and feet, headaches, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, and changes in vision. This amount is typically considered the threshold for medical intervention.
- Hypertension Crisis: A hypertensive crisis demands immediate medical attention. If blood pressure readings exceed 180/120 mm Hg, wait five minutes, then retest. If the readings remain high, contact your healthcare professional promptly.
In cases where blood pressure is higher than 180/120 mm Hg and signs of organ damage are present, such as chest pain, back pain, shortness of breath, any numbness or weakness, vision changes, or difficulty speaking, medical assistance is required immediately.
Why use Carepatron as your Blood Pressure Pregnancy app?
Choosing Carepatron as your preferred application for blood pressure pregnancy charting and identification of hypertension and associated risks, offers healthcare practitioners numerous benefits.
Carepatron offers a centralized workspace, enabling you to efficiently manage clinical documents and electronic patient records, set reminders for patient appointments, as well as seamlessly handle medical billing all within one platform. This eliminates the need for additional software downloads, offering an integrated and comprehensive approach that simplifies blood pressure charting and various other tasks. This streamlined process allows you to focus the majority of your time, attention, and effort on patient care rather than administrative tasks.
Committed to providing an efficient and productive platform for healthcare professionals, Carepatron allows for the customization of tools and workflows to meet individual needs. It empowers both practitioners and patients to manage their administrative tasks like service booking and paperwork completion. The app also facilitates easy sharing of essential documents and data, ensuring a high-quality customer experience.
We are committed to radical accessibility, meaning that our app is available on any device on hand! Our portable medical dictation software simplifies clinical note-taking and ensures an effortless process. We prioritize the security of all notes, clinical records, results, and practitioner data by adhering to global security requirements, including HIPAA, GDPR, and HITRUST.
ACOG. (2018, July). Low-Dose Aspirin Use During Pregnancy. Www.acog.org. https://www.acog.org/clinical/clinical-guidance/committee-opinion/articles/2018/07/low-dose-aspirin-use-during-pregnancy
ACOG. (2022, April). Preeclampsia and High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy. Www.acog.org. https://www.acog.org/womens-health/faqs/preeclampsia-and-high-blood-pressure-during-pregnancy
Healthline. (2018, February 28). Abnormal Blood Pressure Levels in Pregnancy. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/pregnancy/chronic-hypertension-blood-pressure#causes
Kuklina, E. V., Ayala, C., & Callaghan, W. M. (2009). Hypertensive Disorders and Severe Obstetric Morbidity in the United States. Obstetrics & Gynecology, 113(6), 1299–1306. https://doi.org/10.1097/aog.0b013e3181a45b25
Rosenberg, K., & Twaddle, S. (1990). 6 Screening and surveillance of pregnancy hypertension—an economic approach to the use of daycare. Baillieres Clin Obstet Gynaecol. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0950-3552(05)80214-7
WHO. (2011). WHO recommendations for Prevention and treatment of pre-eclampsia and eclampsia. https://iris.who.int/bitstream/handle/10665/44703/?sequence=1