Pregnancy and spinal problems.

Journal: Current Opinion In Obstetrics & Gynecology

Objective: To review recent publications in spinal problems during pregnancy, diagnosis, and management.

Results: Pregnancy-related low back pain (LBP) is the most common problem which can occur during pregnancy. Among the various factors of pregnancy-related LBP, previous LBP and LBP during menstruation seem to be significant risk factors of pregnancy-related LBP. Patient counseling and wearing of a nonelastic pelvic belt are effective for the control of pelvic girdle pain. Lumbar pain can be treated with exercise such as water gymnastics during the second and third trimesters. Although rare, pregnancy can cause osteoporotic compression fractures and symptoms in spinal tumors, especially in vertebral hemangiomas. Lumbar disc herniation is the most common spinal disorder during pregnancy and can cause permanent neurologic deficit in pregnant women. Most cases can be treated by conservative management, but operation can also be safely performed maintaining a healthy pregnancy.

Conclusions: Recent concern about spinal problems in pregnancy is still pregnancy-related LBP. The further studies about its prevalence, risk factors, and treatment will be expected to continue. In both general spinal diseases and pregnancy-induced spinal diseases, there is no significant difference in treatment between pregnant women and ordinary people. Therefore, if consideration of possible spinal problems, exact diagnosis and adequate treatment are performed, good prognosis may be enough achieved in pregnant women.


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