Travel During Pregnancy
In most cases, pregnant women can travel safely until close to their due dates. Please discuss your travel plans with your OB-GYN for specific recommendations. Some considerations:
Delay travel until you are fully vaccinated. If you are not fully vaccinated and must travel, follow the CDC guidelines at www.cdc.gov.
Risk of Blood Clots
DVT (deep venous thrombosis) is a condition in which a blood clot forms in the veins, usually in the leg. DVT can lead to a dangerous condition called pulmonary embolism. This is when a blood clot travels to the lungs. Research shows that any type of travel lasting 4 hours or more—whether by car, train, bus, or plane—doubles the risk of DVT. Being pregnant is an extra risk factor for DVT. If you are planning a long trip, take the following steps to reduce your risk of DVT:
- Drink lots of fluids without caffeine.
- Wear loose-fitting clothing.
- Walk and stretch at regular intervals.
- Special stockings that compress the legs, either below the knee or full length, also can be worn to help prevent blood clots from forming.
- Take 81mg of aspirin (also called low-dose aspirin) once prior to travel if you are not already taking daily aspirin for other indications.
Travel by Plane
- Generally safe during pregnancy. Most airlines allow travel until 36 weeks.
- Consider international travel plans in the third trimester of pregnancy. Depending on where you are planning to go, you may want to delay travel until after delivery based on the healthcare resources available where you are traveling.
- Can be found throughout the world and is transmitted by a mosquito
- Babies born to women infected with Zika are at increased risk for birth defects, especially microcephaly (small head and brain)
- There is no vaccine or treatment for Zika. Avoidance of mosquito bites in active areas is the best protection. Discuss with your doctor if you will be traveling out of the country.
- Visit www.cdc.gov/zika for the most updated guidelines.