No one wants to suffer a disorder or health condition during pregnancy, because it's already a major strain on the body. Sometimes, complications arise during pregnancy or delivery, though, and it's important for doctors to treat those complications quickly. Not doing so can lead to lifelong consequences for a child or mother.
Preeclampsia is a condition that can happen during pregnancy. This condition can quickly become dangerous, as the expectant mother's blood pressure will rise and cause a number of serious side effects. Some side effects include headaches, abdominal pain, seeing flashing lights, vomiting, confusion, anxiety, and other effects. Around 5 to 8 percent of all births are impacted by preeclampsia and hypertensive conditions in the United States.
Normally, most women with this condition recover after birth and give birth to a healthy child. Sometimes, the condition can become life threatening to either the mother, child, or both.
With Preeclampsia, there are two forms, preeclampsia eclampsia and preeclapsia superimposed on chronic hypertension. Eclampsia itself can cause seizures during pregnancy or postpartum. These seizures can result in brain damage, coma, and potential death if not treatment.
There are a few types of medical conditions that can be linked to preeclampsia. Some include imbalanced hormones including prostacyclin or thromboxane, the hormones that control the blood vessels' diameter. Calcium deficiency, nutritional deficiencies, or obesity can also be linked to a higher risk of preeclampsia.
Those who suffer preeclampsia may give birth to a baby prematurely. Intrauterine growth restriction is also possible, where the baby then is malnourished in the body. Acidosis, which can kill, requires immediate delivery to save a child, and death can happen due to preeclampsia's side effects.
Source: Preeclampsia Foundation, "Preeclampsia FAQS," accessed Sep. 01, 2015