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Pre-eclampsia and eclampsia explained
Article in images

Risk factors in pre-eclampsia


Dr Melinda Crème and her two sisters suffered from pre-eclampsia
Dr Melinda Crème and her two sisters suffered from pre-eclampsia
Although there is no known cause for pre-eclampsia, there are certain women that can be more at risk, including the over-40's and those under 18.

Other risk factors include patients with a history of high blood pressure, family history of the condition, first time mums, the obese, and those suffering from kidney disease.

There is also a belief that a genetic factor can also play a part and this is this case with mum-of-three and GP, Dr Melinda Crème who, along with her two sisters, suffered from pre-eclampsia.

“My case was an unusual one as being a GP I was aware the condition affected first time mothers so it came as a shock to me when I developed it in my second pregnancy,” she explained.

Since there is no known cure for the condition, depending on the woman's state of pregnancy, a variety of treatment can be given. Induction of label is often used if the baby is not too premature.

“At around 32 weeks pregnant I began to have terrible headaches and my blood pressure was all over the place. The headaches became terrible and with it I began to get blurred vision, which all pointed to pre-eclampsia - so at 38 weeks I was induced (two weeks early).”

“Management and survival rates are improving all the time,” added Dr O'Brien. “It is so important for women to attend regular antenatal visits in the last third of pregnancy so any pre-eclampsia problems can be picked up.”



Suzanne Baum
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