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FutureStarrASwollen Lymph Nodes Pregnancy
Swollen lymph nodes are typically a sign of infection, from a simple cold to something potentially more dangerous, such as chicken pox. It’s this range of possibility that can be especially nerve-wracking when you have swollen lymph nodes while pregnant. In this already stressful time, you can’t help but think about what might happen if those microbes affect your pregnancy. The good news is, in the vast majority of cases, there’s no need to worry. Here’s what to know about having swollen lymph nodes in pregnancy.
Most commonly, swollen lymph nodes are a sign of an infection or recent infection, says Michael Cackovic, MD, an ob-gyn at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus. As impurities pass a lymph node via the lymphatic fluid, the node swells up as it works to filter the germs out. You’ll notice a swollen node as a small lump or bump in certain areas of your body—most commonly, the neck, under your chin, in the groin and in your armpit. Sometimes swollen lymph nodes can feel tender to the touch, says Christine Greves, MD, an ob-gyn at the Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies in Orlando, Florida. As you heal, the swelling will subside.Of course, it’s natural to worry whether the infection will affect baby. Its impact “depends on the underlying cause,” Greves says. Fortunately, most infections you’ll encounter, such as cold, flu, strep throat and mono, will likely not harm the growing fetus. But in rare cases, swollen lymph nodes during pregnancy are a sign of infections that can increase the risk for birth defects and miscarriage—for instance, herpes, chicken pox and fifth disease.
Never hesitate to call your doctor if you suspect something’s not right. To avoid any infection that might lead to swollen lymph nodes and a potentially problematic pregnancy, keep your hands away from your face, wash your hands diligently and stay away from people who might be sick. To avoid herpes (or any other sexually transmitted infection), use a condom if your partner has the condition, even when they aren’t experiencing a flare-up; avoid sex altogether when they are. If you’re not in a monogomous relationship, always use a condom and avoid sex in the last weeks of your pregnancy.Lymph nodes are tiny, bean-shaped clusters that are a part of the lymphatic system. Lymph nodes are the most important component of the immune system. They play an important role in the immune response of the body by filtering the lymphatic fluid and trapping the infectious particles and serving as the barriers of the body. Swollen lymph nodes indicate that something is wrong with the immune system. If you have swollen lymph nodes during pregnancy, you must check with a doctor. Since pregnancy is a delicate phase, you should try to get the treatment for the same as soon as the symptoms are visible. (Source: parenting.firstcry.com)