ADVICE ON CONTRACEPTION
Pregnancy and Pulmonary Hypertension
Pregnancy places a significant strain on the heart and lungs. This can result in life threatening problems for patients with pulmonary hypertension. In addition some of the drugs which are used to treat pulmonary hypertension can harm the development of the baby. Consequently our advice is to avoid becoming pregnant. If, in the knowledge of the risks, you still wish to become pregnant then we would advise you to discuss this with a member of the SPVU team.
As our advice is not to become pregnant, it is very important to use effective contraception. The combined oral contraceptive pill is not recommended because of the risk of developing clots in the legs or lungs. Many of the agents that are used to treat pulmonary hypertension interfere with contraceptive pills and implants and result in contraceptive failure.
It is therefore recommended that two forms of contraception should be used to ensure full protection. This would usually be in the form of a hormonal tablet such as the progestogen only pill and a barrier method such as the male condom.