Symptoms and treatment of eclampsia in pregnancy and childbirth

Symptoms and treatment of eclampsia in pregnancy and childbirth

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Symptoms and treatment of eclampsia in pregnancy also known as seizure toxemia, characterized by presence of seizures in a pregnant woman.

These seizures are not related to brain diseases, but rather to an increase in blood pressure and generally occur after the 20th week of pregnancy.

The most significant warning sign of eclampsia is the presence of seizures, which can also lead to intense agitation, loss of consciousness, and muscle pain. These symptoms can appear in combination with those of pre-eclampsia, which include swelling in the hands and face, weight gain of more than 3 kilos per week, headache and stomach pain.

Apart from attending to the patient's symptoms, the doctor must submit the pregnant woman to a physical examination to rule out other possible causes of the seizures. For this, it is necessary to check and control the blood pressure and the respiratory rate. Blood tests are also required to assess uric acid, creatinine (used to measure kidney function), and platelets.

The treatment of eclampsia consists of increasing the mother's blood flow so that it reaches the brain correctly, sedating the patient and reducing her blood pressure. If the pregnancy is advanced enough, the doctor may choose to perform a C-section. And is that prolonging the pregnancy of a woman with eclampsia is very riskyAs it can be life-threatening for both mother and baby, in approximately 87 percent of cases. Therefore, a woman with eclampsia must be continuously monitored and delivery is the best treatment option for pregnancies over 28 weeks.

For women whose pregnancy has not exceeded 24 weeks of gestation, it is recommended to also start labor, although the baby may not survive. The use of anti-seizure medications is an alternative treatment option for some women. Magnesium sulfate is a safe medicine for both mother and baby. Another alternative is drugs to lower high blood pressure that aim to manage severe cases until the 32nd or 34th week of gestation, and mild cases until after 36 weeks of pregnancy. However, labor can be induced if blood pressure remains high despite the use of medications. This condition is relieved for the mother after the baby is born.

You should seek medical assistance or go to the emergency room, if at any time during your pregnancy you notice any symptoms of eclampsia or pre-eclampsia. Some of the most characteristic emergency symptoms are seizures or decreased consciousness.

Marisol New.

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Video: Preeclampsia Video - Brigham and Womens Hospital (August 2022).