Background: Pregnancy is associated with substantial changes in cardiovascular system. The action of autonomic nervous system is essential for circulatory adaptations in pregnancy and nourishing growing fetus.
Objective: The study was conducted to assess the significance of autonomic function tests amongst women of mid pregnancy and non pregnant women.
Materials and Methods: A comparative study was caried out amongst pregnant and non pregnant women in Department of Physiology. A total of 60 women (30 pregnant as study group and 30 non pregnant healthy women as control group) aged between 18- 30 years were included in study.
Results: The results indicated that there was statistically significant change in resting heart and highly statistically significant change to deep breathing in mid pregnancy reflecting higher parasympathetic activity in study group (pregnant female) as compared to control group (non pregnant female) while sympathetic activity assessed by isometric hand grip test didn’t show any statistically significant change among pregnant as compared to non pregnant.
Conclusions: Our study showed role of parasympathetic activity in controlling haemodynamics in mid pregnancy and it may help to return the arterial pressure to non pregnant level by causing haemodilution, although when the increase in activity is excessive, hypertension may ensue.
Pregnancy, Autonomic nervous system, Hypertension, Isometric hand grip test.