Preeclampsia is a profound disorder of the functions of the vital organs and systems of the expectant mother, a severe form of gestosis, which is characterized by high blood pressure, the presence of protein in the urine, swelling and disruption of the central nervous system and a number of other vital organs. The concept of “gestosis” originated in medicine in 1996, before that all the painful symptoms and rather dangerous conditions that sometimes occur in the second half of pregnancy were combined by the term “late toxicosis”. Unlike early toxicosis, which in the vast majority of cases does not pose a serious threat to the woman and fetus, gestosis is a rather severe complication of pregnancy and can end fatally for both the pregnant woman and the fetus.
Preeclampsia is a deep disorder of the functions of vital organs and systems of the expectant mother, which most often occurs against the background of pre–existing diseases: hypertension, kidney, liver and biliary tract diseases, endocrine diseases. The causes of preeclampsia are not fully understood. There are exceptions when late preeclampsia occurs in women who did not have chronic diseases or any serious health disorders before pregnancy.
Preeclampsia can manifest itself in different ways: both in the form of very serious conditions that cannot be missed, and in the form of symptoms that, at first glance, do not pose a serious threat, but which, nevertheless, can hide very big problems.
Don’t miss the following symptoms of preeclampsia:
1. Puffiness. Edema of pregnant women – this problem may or may not be related to preeclampsia. Quite often, minor edema of the lower extremities is a variant of the norm and does not pose any danger to the expectant mother. It is advisable to tell about them to a doctor who observes pregnancy. In no case should you self-medicate. This can worsen the problem, make it difficult to diagnose at an early stage and lead to disastrous consequences.
2. High blood pressure and proteinuria (the appearance of protein in the urine) – the presence of these symptoms should alert the doctor, as they require more thorough examination, observation and, if necessary, emergency treatment.
3. Skeletal muscle cramps. During seizures, blood pressure rises sharply and there is a threat of stroke in a pregnant woman. The child may be threatened with death due to premature detachment of the placenta.
4. Preeclampsia can be mild, moderate and severe. In severe cases, signs of damage to the central nervous system are added to the above symptoms: severe headaches, nausea, vomiting, pain in the epigastric region, visual impairment, painful psychological reactions.
Timely diagnosis and timely treatment, which the doctor prescribes strictly individually, based on the data of laboratory tests and instrumental studies, allow you to keep the situation under control. Therefore, it is very important to regularly visit a doctor observing pregnancy, to undergo all examinations on his recommendation.
If the doctor suspects preeclampsia in a pregnant woman, then with its mild forms, treatment at home will be prescribed, more severe forms will require hospitalization. In inpatient conditions, doctors will do everything possible to restore the functions of vital organs and eliminate the danger threatening mother and child.
Sometimes, in the most severe cases, when treatment is ineffective, and the condition of the pregnant woman and the baby worsens, an early delivery is carried out. But doctors use this extreme measure only in cases when all alternative possibilities have been exhausted.