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FAQ Frequently asked questions
What is pre-eclampsia?
Pre-eclampsia is a condition that develops during or very soon after pregnancy. It is one of the most common serious complications of pregnancy and can threaten the lives of both the mother and baby. It is characterized by high blood pressure and the presence of …
How common is pre-eclampsia?
Pre-eclampsia is the most common serious complication of pregnancy. In Australia, it is thought to affect around 5-10% of all pregnancies. Of these, around 1-2% of cases are severe and threaten the lives of the mother and her baby.
How will pre-eclampsia affect my baby?
Pre-eclampsia can reduce the blood supply to the placenta, which transfers nutrients and oxygen from the mother to the fetus for growth and development. Having a reduced blood supply can affect the placental function and the fetal growth. In some …
What causes pre-eclampsia?
It is not known what causes pre-eclampsia. It is thought to occur because of a problem with the placenta, which transfers nutrients and oxygen from the mother to the fetus. There are several factors that may increase the risk of developing pre-eclampsia during …
How can I prevent pre-eclampsia?
There is no known way to prevent pre-eclampsia. Having regular check-ups with a doctor during pregnancy may help to detect the condition early. Getting treatment early and managing the condition is the best way to prevent serious complications of …
What is the treatment for pre-eclampsia?
The treatment for pre-eclampsia may depend on how far along your pregnancy is and how serious your condition is. The only cure for pre-eclampsia is to deliver the baby. Mild cases of pre-eclampsia may be treated with close monitoring of blood …
How do I know if I have pre-eclampsia?
Many women with pre-eclampsia do not experience any symptoms. The condition is usually detected by a doctor during a routine pregnancy check-up, when they measure your blood pressure. If you have a blood pressure reading and your doctor suspects that …
What are the signs of having pre-eclampsia?
The main signs of pre-eclampsia are a sudden increase in blood pressure and the presence of protein in the urine. It is common for pre-eclampsia to develop after week 20 of gestation. Pre-eclampsia can occur without any noticeable symptoms. The …
About this article
Author: Dr Joanne Van der Velden PhD, BSc (Hons)
First answered: 24 Nov 2014
Last reviewed: 14 May 2019
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Votes: 329 (Click smiley face below left to rate)