Mother and Baby

Health Buzz! New Test Could Help Predict Pre-Eclampsia

New research could help develop a method to determine whether a woman may develop pre-eclampsia during her pregnancy

The study, published in the American Heart Association Journal Circulation, looked at 625 pregnant patients from the UK, in particular at the presence of a placental protein, known as Protein Placental Growth Factor.

In the group, 61% went on to develop pre-eclampsia including those with low levels of the protein, suggesting it's a good indicator for the condition and something to be monitored.

Pre-eclampsia is a complex form of high blood pressure that can strike during the second half of pregnancy or immediately after giving birth

‘The test is designed to differentiate women with pre-eclampsia from those with high blood pressure alone,’ says Lucy Chappell, Ph.D., clinical senior lecturer in Obstetrics at King’s College in London.

‘Current tests for the condition only detect that it’s happening, rather than predicting it, and by that time the disease has progressed. The test identifies women at high risk for developing pre-eclampsia, so doctors can better monitor and treat the blood pressure. It also prevents unnecessary hospitalisations of those who are not likely to develop pre-eclampsia.’

Pre-eclampsia is a complex form of high blood pressure that can strike during the second half of pregnancy (from around 20 weeks) or immediately after giving birth. It has implications for both mum and baby, including possible premature delivery, so is monitored closely when diagnosed.

Did you suffer from high blood pressure during your pregnancy? Let us know below.

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