Preeclampsia is a multisystem disorder associated with significant changes in the mother and Child. It is thought to be related to how the placenta attaches and grows, though the exact reason is still unknown. It can cause significant adverse outcomes if left untreated, including seizure (eclampsia), stroke, or death, so recognizing the symptoms early is important for the health of both mother and baby.
It can damage several organs, including the liver and kidneys. It is characterized by high blood pressure, protein in your urine (proteinuria), changes in your vision, pain under your ribs on the right side, persistent nausea and vomiting, swelling of the face and hands, and/or headaches that do not improve with hydration or medications.
Below, you will find more about preeclampsia symptoms.
Hypertension is a systolic pressure over 140 mmHg and diastolic pressure over 90 mmHg. High blood pressure is one of the main signs of preeclampsia, and is required for diagnosis. Elevated blood pressure without proteinuria or other symptoms is called gestational hypertension, and requires very close monitoring as it can develop into preeclampsia quickly.
Proteinuria - the amount of protein in the urine is over 0.3 g / L. Proteinuria associated with hypertension is the strongest indicator of preeclampsia.
Sometimes swelling (edema) can be the first sign of preeclampsia. It is not uncommon to have some swelling in your feet at the end of pregnancy. However, significant swelling in your hands and any swelling in your face is not normal, and is a common sign of preeclampsia.
A significant and constant symptom of preeclampsia in pregnancy is the retinal vascular changes that are detected by examination of the eye. This may appear as blurred vision, missing a portion of your vision, or seeing flashing lights.
Note the following may also occur:
● Severe headaches that don't stop
● Sharp pain below the ribs, especially on the right side
● Nausea and vomiting in the later stages of pregnancy
Patients with mild preeclampsia can be closely monitored out of the hospital until they are 37 weeks. It is necessary to follow the mother's condition (blood pressure, body weight, amount of protein in the urine, and number platelets) and fetus’s to detect symptoms of worsening preeclampsia in time, which is an indication for hospitalization. It is crucial to insist on frequent prenatal examinations, never miss an examination, and report all signs and symptoms to the midwife or doctor.
Maintaining your prenatal appointments is important to your care so that your doctor or midwife can recognize any of the above symptoms early. To schedule your prenatal appointment, call (480) 539-6646 or book online