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When your pregnancy is straightforward, there is no evidence that flying is harmful to you or your baby. With any flight there is a slight increase in the amount of radiation you may be exposed to.
If you are over 28 weeks pregnant, your airline will ask you to get a letter from your midwife or doctor stating when your baby is due (due date) and confirming that you are not at an increased risk of any complications.
For some women flying is associated with an increased risk of medical problems and discomfort.
If you are taking a short-haul flight (under 4 hours), it is unlikely that you will need to take any special measures. Wear graduated elastic compression stockings – your midwife or doctor will need to provide the correct size and type for you as they are different from standard flight socks. Whatever the length of your flight, if you have additional risk factors for DVT, you may be advised to take heparin (an injection which reduces the likelihood of you forming blood clots) on the day of the flight and for several days afterwards. A medical condition or health problem can complicate your pregnancy and put you and your baby at risk. You are affected with sickle cell anaemia (a condition which affects red blood cells) and you have recently had a sickling crisis. You are affected with a serious condition affecting your lungs or heart and it is very difficult to breathe.
It is important you discuss any health issues or pregnancy complications with your doctor or midwife before you fly.
Any pregnant woman (even in an uncomplicated pregnancy) has a small chance of going into labour early or their waters breaking early.
In deciding whether or not to fly, think about your own medical history and anyincreased risks that you may have.
Are you travelling because there is more specialised medical treatment in the country you are going to and better healthcare in case of an emergency? What are the medical facilities at your destination in the event of an unexpected complication with your pregnancy?


Do you have all your immunisations and recommended medication for the country you are travelling to? Does your travel insurance cover pregnancy and care for your newborn baby if you give birth unexpectedly? Have you discussed your travel plans with your midwife and informed them that you are thinking about taking a medium- or long-haul flight? The RCOG consents to the reproduction of this document providing that full acknowledgement is made. Professor Tom BourneProfessor Tom Bourne is Adjunct Professor at Imperial College London, and Consultant Gynaecologist at Queen Charlotte's and Chelsea Hospital.
There are all kinds of invasive and uncomfortable tests that could be done, and I had them all.
The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. Some women are concerned about flying because of the changes in the atmosphere inside the plane – the drop in air pressure and the decrease in humidity. You should ensure the strap of your seatbelt is reasonably tightly fastened under your tummy and across the top of your thighs. You should always check with your airline before you book your flight because policies vary and airlines may exercise flexibility on the basis of the flight duration and destination. From 37 weeks of pregnancy, the chance of you going into labour is significantly increased – which is why many women choose not to fly after this time. The effects of sitting still for long periods of time in sometimes cramped conditions can increase the risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT). If you experience motion sickness during the flight, it can make your pregnancy sickness worse. For security purposes, you will need a letter from your doctor to enable you to carry this medicine onto the plane. If you have fractured a bone in your leg and the bone has not yet mended, you may experience significant leg swelling during the flight.


If this happens to you on aflight, there is no guarantee that any of the other passengers or crew will be trained and experienced to help you give birth safely. If you are a member of a flight crew or you fly frequently as part of your work, you should seek additional advice from your occupational health department concerning your own situation. Many women are also concerned that flying could cause them to go into labour early and cause their waters to break. Some airlines do not allow women to fly after 37 weeks, while others do not allow women to fly from earlier in the pregnancy, for example after 34 weeks. Combined with this, the lowered air pressure in the plane can also cause you to experience problems in your ears.
Red blood cells contain the iron-rich pigment haemoglobin, which carries oxygen around your body.
He has extensive clinical and research experience in early pregnancy care as well as gynaecological ultrasound. When you are pregnant and for up to 6 weeks after the birth of your baby, you have a higher risk of developing a DVT compared with women who are not pregnant.
If you are on a flight lasting more than 8 hours, there is evidence to suggest that you may be at increased risk of developing a DVT. He advises NICE, is trustee of the ectopic pregnancy trust, President of the UK association of early pregnancy units (AEPU) and on the board of ISUOG. This is especially so if you already have certain risk factors (such as a previous DVT or obesity). He has a private practice at The Women's Ultrasound Centres at 86 Harley Street and Parkside Hospital in Wimbledon.



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