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* This is the Consumer Version. *

Introduction to Symptoms During Pregnancy

By Geeta K. Swamy, MD, Duke University Medical Center ; R. Phillips Heine, MD, Duke University Medical Center

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Symptoms that occur during pregnancy may be normal (see Physical Changes During Pregnancy) or may indicate a problem. A problem may be related to the pregnancy or to another disorder, and evaluation by a doctor may be required. Some symptoms should always be reported immediately to a doctor. They include

  • Persistent or unusual headaches

  • Persistent nausea and vomiting

  • Dizziness

  • Vision problems

  • Pain or cramps in the lowest part of the torso (pelvic pain)

  • Contractions

  • Vaginal bleeding

  • Leakage of amniotic fluid (described as "the water breaks")

  • Swelling of the hands or feet

  • Decreased urination

  • Any illness or infection

  • Shaking (tremor) of the hands, feet, or both

  • Seizures

  • A racing heart

  • Decreased movement of the fetus

* This is the Consumer Version. *