ASK DR NOVOA – I am 26 weeks pregnant and want to travel by air. Is this safe?

The safest time to travel is between 14-28 weeks of gestational age. Most emergencies will happen before this time period and it is much more difficult to travel due to size and level of discomfort after the 28th week.

In the absence of obstetric or medical complications, pregnant women can travel and fly as if they were not pregnant. Most airlines will restrict travel for international flights after the 32nd week, most national airlines before 36th week. You may be required to get a clearance from your obstetrician if you plan to travel.

While in the air, pregnant women should wear their seatbelts at all times. They should also take precautions when seated by reclining their seats and stretching out their legs as often as possible in order to decrease the risk of blood clots forming in the legs. For most air travelers, the risks to the fetus from exposure to cosmic radiation are negligible. For pregnant aircrew members and other frequent flyers, this exposure may be higher.

If traveling by car, always rest in a reclined position with your seatbelt on and with your legs stretched out. Make frequent stops and don’t travel more than 6 hours per day. Make sure your keep a list of hospitals on your route in case of emergencies.

If traveling by ship, be very careful about viruses which cause intestinal infections such as Noroviruses which can cause severe nausea and vomiting for 1-2 days.

If traveling by spaceship, Please take me!!!! I love the movie Cocoon. 🙂

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Filed under Blog, Obstetrics, Questions of the Day

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