Preeclampsia is a serious disorder related to high blood pressure. It can happen to any pregnant woman during the second half of her pregnancy, or up to six weeks after delivery. Most cases are not severe and occur near term with healthy outcomes. Preeclampsia can, however, be very dangerous for mom and baby, progressing quite rapidly in some cases. Risks to mom include seizures, stroke, and organ damage, and premature birth for baby. Both mom and baby could die. Preeclampsia is diagnosed by the presence of high blood pressure and, usually, protein in the urine. This is why your blood pressure and urine are checked at every prenatal appointment—and why it’s so important to keep every prenatal appointment.
What is preeclampsia?