Increased heart rate during pregnancy


An increased heart rate during pregnancy is a phenomenon that affects almost all pregnant women. As a rule, an increased pulse during pregnancy is a physiological adjustment mechanism to the pregnancy. It is used for safe blood flow to the fetus or baby. In rare cases, a high pulse during pregnancy is also an expression of a dangerous problem for the unborn child. Therefore, the pulse should always be closely monitored and deviations should be checked by the doctor. Most of the time, however, it is a normal adaptive response of the body.


An increased heart rate during pregnancy can have various causes. First and foremost, an increased heart rate during pregnancy is a physiological response of the body to the pregnancy. The placenta and embryo need a good blood supply. This is ensured by the fact that the vascular resistance decreases and the heart beats about 10-20 times more often per minute than before. The placenta is thus optimally supplied with blood.

But a high pulse during pregnancy can also have pathological causes. Relative anemia is more common during pregnancy (anemia), which is compensated by an increased pulse. An overactive thyroid (Hyperthyroidism) can also accelerate the heartbeat. So-called pregnancy poisoning is rarely the reason for increased pulse values. However, this usually manifests itself as sudden high blood pressure.

Pulmonary embolism during pregnancy is another rare but dangerous cause. This occurs more frequently during pregnancy because the blood coagulates more quickly in pregnant women. In addition, an increased pulse during pregnancy can be an expression of a disease that has nothing to do with the pregnancy itself. Heart diseases in general often lead to an increased heart rate. These include e.g. pericarditis or new atrial fibrillation. Other causes are e.g. pneumonia, stress, or hormonal imbalances.

You might also be interested in:

  • Hyperthyroidism in pregnancy
  • Pulmonary Embolism in Pregnancy


In most cases, an increased pulse during pregnancy does not require a definitive diagnosis. An increased heart rate during pregnancy can nonetheless if necessary by a Long-term ECG can be assessed with pulse measurement. As long as the pulse not increased by more than 10-20 beats per minute is and no accompanying symptoms come to are no action to be taken.

Does the Suspicion of other causes, an increased heart rate should be further investigated during pregnancy. The Determination of thyroid levels leads to the diagnosis of hyperthyroidism. Other useful investigations are one Blood pressure measurement, one Assessment of heart and lung function as well as a Ultrasonic of the unborn baby. Also one Urinalysis can be useful to identify what is known as pregnancy poisoning. Then a diagnosis can be made.

Concomitant causes

Depending on the cause, an increased pulse during pregnancy can cause accompanying symptoms. At the beginning of pregnancy it can be too Headache and performance kink come. The body has to get used to the new rhythm first. Otherwise, a high pulse during pregnancy does not cause any symptoms.

If there are accompanying symptoms such as Nausea or abdominal pain on, must seek medical help immediately become. The child may be impaired here. Especially when it comes to Water retention on the body comes, an increased heart rate can occur in pregnancy Expression of pregnancy poisoning be. Shortness of breath indicates a lung problem, dizziness or tightness in the chest point towards the heart. Is an increased heart rate during pregnancy caused by the thyroid gland, occur as accompanying symptoms Sweating, restlessness and nervousness on. In case of a Anemia can Fatigue, poor concentration and poor performance accompanying symptoms of increased heart rate. In addition, there is a visible pallor, which is particularly noticeable on the mucous membranes.

What is normal?

For the women concerned, the question arises: "What is normal?" Heart rate between 60-100 beats per minute is generally referred to as normal. Especially at the beginning, an increased pulse during pregnancy of an additional 10-20 beats per minute can be considered normal. It is important that no complaints are noticed. Otherwise, a value within these limits can also be rated as abnormal. At the end of pregnancy, the heart rate drops again on values ​​of non-pregnant people.

When is it dangerous?

The question “When is it dangerous?” Is the crucial question. It should be said that if in doubt, it is better to listen to your gut instinct and see a doctor. It can be dangerous if the pulse is permanently over 120. This can be a sign of a more severe underlying illness. Especially when accompanying symptoms and severe discomfort occur, a high pulse during pregnancy is to be regarded as dangerous. In the event of an increased pulse, pain, nausea, dizziness or other symptoms, a doctor must be consulted immediately to clarify the symptoms.

Read more on the topic: High heart rate at rest


The thyroid is a central organ in the regulation of the body's energy balance. The hormones produced by the thyroid gland also play a central role in regulating the heart rate. As In response to pregnancy, the thyroid gland usually also enlarges During this time. But this reaction can overshoot the mark. A high pulse during pregnancy is a consequence of this.

Here the thyroid hormones stimulate the heart to a great extent. At the same time it comes to nervous moods, significant weight loss and sweating attacks. An increased pulse during pregnancy then also affects the unborn child. It occurs with hyperthyroidism during pregnancy increased to premature births and underweight children. Therefore, a significantly increased pulse during pregnancy must always be clarified over a longer period to ensure that everything is OK with the thyroid.

If it is appropriate from a medical point of view, a Therapy of hyperfunction the thyroid gland. Through the Giving medication the thyroid gland can be inhibited and its function normalized. If the overactive thyroid is detected early in pregnancy via an increased pulse, it is an easy-to-treat problem.

Poisoning during pregnancy

The term Poisoning during pregnancy Colloquially describes a group of diseases in pregnant women, which the medical profession calls Gestures designated. They are known here Eclampsia and the pre-eclampsia. It's coming initially to harmless symptoms such as headaches and slightly increased blood pressure. But there is one behind it potentially life-threatening clinical picture for mother and child. An increased pulse during pregnancy can be the first indication of pregnancy poisoning. Typically, however, this is expressed through high blood pressure, water retention, foamy urine, and eventually seizures. Then it's one gynecological emergency. This is one of the reasons why a high pulse should always be checked during pregnancy.

Evidence of twins?

Some sources report that an increased heart rate during pregnancy can be an indication of twins. Indeed it was in some cases where a woman has had twins, an increased heart rate has been noted during pregnancy. The reverse was also true in many cases. Thus, there is an increased pulse in pregnancy not a sure sign of twins. An ultrasound scan can provide a reliable indication of twins.