Effect of exercise on placental blood flow in pregnancies complicated by hypertension, diabetes or intrahepatic cholestasis

Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 1988;67(1):15-20. doi: 10.3109/00016348809004161.


The effects of a standardized exercise test on intervillous placental blood flow were studied in 13 hypertensive, 10 diabetic and 8 cholestatic pregnant women in late pregnancy, and the results were compared with those of a normal control group. Analysis of variance for repeated measures revealed that in all the pathologic groups, placental blood flow was lower than in the controls. In all groups placental blood flow rose slightly 1 min after the cessation of exercise. The diabetics showed a decreased placental blood flow 30 min after the cessation of the exercise test (p less than 0.02). In diabetics, a fall was found in stroke volume, from 63 +/- 12 ml (mean +/- SD) before the exercise to 53 +/- 11 ml 30 min after the cessation of exercise (p less than 0.05), and a rise in peripheral vascular resistance, from 1540 +/- 200 (mean +/- SD) dynes/cm5 before exercise to 1750 +/- 390 dynes/cm5 30 min after the cessation of exercise (p less than 0.05). Pre-eclamptic patients had a higher peripheral vascular resistance than had normal controls. Pre-eclamptic, diabetic and cholestatic patients had lower cardiac index values than the normal subjects. The difference was significant in the pre-eclamptic and diabetic patients at 30 min after the cessation of exercise. Maternal heart rate, and systolic, diastolic and mean arterial blood pressures rose significantly from values at rest to values at the end of exercise in all groups. One of the pre-eclamptic patients showed a 74% decline in placental blood flow 1 min after the cessation of exercise coincident with fetal bradycardia.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cholestasis, Intrahepatic / physiopathology*
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Hemodynamics
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / physiopathology*
  • Placenta / blood supply*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / physiopathology*
  • Pregnancy Complications, Cardiovascular / physiopathology*
  • Pregnancy in Diabetics / physiopathology*
  • Regional Blood Flow