Background: Little is known about the prognosis and management of pregnancies among women who experienced a cardiac arrest in a previous pregnancy. Case study: Cardiac arrest complicated the immediate postpartum course of a multiparous patient following an otherwise uncomplicated vaginal delivery at term. Utilizing echocardiography, a saddle pulmonary embolism was diagnosed and emergent thoracotomy and embolectomy were performed as live-saving measures. After a prolonged period of rehabilitation, the patient was discharged home. She subsequently became pregnant two years later, was maintained on therapeutic anticoagulation, and delivered a viable infant at term without significant maternal or neonatal sequelae. Conclusion: Etiology of cardiac arrest and subsequent cardiac function should direct the management of future pregnancies. Favorable pregnancy outcomes are possible among women who experienced a cardiac arrest in a previous pregnancy due to saddle emboli.
Somer SJH, Sinkey RG, and Louis JM
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