The UK’s National Health Service (NHS) launched a new app that will help soon-to-be moms monitor their health at home. The goal is to avoid cases of preeclampsia, a condition that poses a serious threat to both the mother and the baby. With the app, the NHS hopes to empower moms to keep tabs on their health so that complications can be reduced during the nine-month process.
Preeclampsia is a sudden increase in blood pressure that usually occurs after the 20th week of pregnancy. If a mom’s blood pressure is left unchecked, it can lead to a more serious complication: eclampsia. This is when a woman’s blood pressure is so high that they begin to convulse and suffer from seizures. It can cause serious damage to the developing baby’s organs, which may ultimately kill them. Watching out for signs such as headaches, pain below the ribs, blurred vision and swelling of the feet is important in preventing preeclampsia.
The new app is an all-around monitor for moms to keep tabs on their health at home. With it, the NHS hopes to lessen visits to the doctor for checkups. It provides expecting moms with comprehensive maternity data, and it allows for easy access and tracking of all the needed records. The app will allow users to record photographs of scans, birth preferences, referrals to maternity units, and it records baby’s movements and the user’s blood pressure.
Physicians highlight how apps like these are important to encouraging women to take charge of their own health and be less anxious during a pregnancy. Information on their pregnancy not only gives moms peace of mind when they think something might be wrong, but it also gives expecting moms earlier alerts if something truly is wrong. This way, there’s less time spent on guess work at the hospital and more spent on addressing the issue.
In the past year, officials have reported over 100,000 women who successfully used the app during their pilot study. With positive results, they plan to make the app available to more moms by 2024. Hopefully, the new tool will successfully keep more moms safe during their pregnancy.