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Expectant Moms: Take Care and Don't Panic About Coronavirus

FRIDAY, March 13, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As coronavirus continues to spread, pregnant women may be especially anxious.

But a University of California, Los Angeles expert says there's no reason to panic.

While expectant mothers are at higher risk for developing complications from some respiratory viruses because they have a weakened immune system, they need not be overly concerned about coronavirus, according to Dr. Neil Silverman, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology.

Pregnant women should take the same precautions as everyone else, he said. Those include washing hands often and avoiding contact with people who are sick, especially those who have visited areas with a coronavirus outbreak.

Expectant moms don't need to wear a mask if they feel well, or stay indoors or avoid public spaces, Silverman said in a UCLA news release.

As with the general public, non-essential travel isn't recommended, however. Air travel is especially risky due to prolonged exposure. If your seatmate is coughing, it's unlikely that you can move to another seat and you can't get off the plane, he noted.

Most pregnant women who have mild respiratory symptoms such as cough or fever need not get tested for coronavirus, Silverman said.

However, if a pregnant woman develops these symptoms after contact with people who have tested positive for coronavirus or who have traveled to areas where outbreaks have occurred, she should contact her health care provider, he added.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on coronavirus and pregnancy.

SOURCE: UCLA Health, news release, March 10, 2020

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