Objective: To evaluate maximal respiratory pressures, pulmonary volumes and capacities and exercise functional capacity in pregnant women with preeclampsia.
Method: Primigravid women with preeclampsia and healthy primigravid women were evaluated by means of manovacuometry, spirometry and the 6-minute walk test.
Results: The group with preeclampsia showed higher minute ventilation and lower forced vital capacity and exercise tolerance. The presence of preeclampsia and forced vital capacity were predictors in the six-minute walk test.
Conclusion: Preeclampsia showed significant alterations in the respiratory system and was associated with lower exercise tolerance; however, it did not affect respiratory muscle functions.