High Blood Pressure

Symptoms Of High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy

It is important to be able to identify the symptoms of high blood pressure in pregnant women because it can lead to certain dangerous health complications. It can lead to a seizure or to kidney disease or cause premature delivery or even stillbirth. It can also adversely affect the birth weight of the fetus.

The signs and symptoms of high blood pressure during pregnancy (preeclampsia) become identifiable after the 20th week of pregnancy. Not only does it then cause the blood pressure to rise to above 140/90 mm Hg systolic/diastolic, it also causes the appearance of increased urine (proteinuria) in a pregnant woman's blood. Sometimes the blood pressure levels can rise upto 170/110 mm Hg systolic/diastolic. Although all pregnant women are not affected by preeclampsia, those that are display the following signs and symptoms.

There are perceptible signs of edema over the body of the affected pregnant woman. She may have swollen feet, face, and/or arms. Sudden weight gain can also be one other associated symptom. Most women do display these symptoms when they are pregnant and even when they do not have preeclampsia. However, it still becomes important to test them for preeclampsia to avoid any complications.

Another symptom that can indicate preeclampsia in a pregnant woman is if she complains of pain in the upper abdomen on the right side, especially in the area where the liver is located. In preeclampsia, the liver is one organ that can become affected and this happens because of clot formation inside the blood circulation system. The normally functional blood coagulation system goes haywire during preeclampsia. It can block blood vessels and make a pregnant woman go into seizure. This could be life threatening.

If a pregnant woman who has high blood pressure also displays the symptoms of headache and tiredness, they are clear signs of severe preeclampsia.

Another organ that is affected adversely during preeclampsia is the kidney. High blood pressure can cause the blood filtering ability of the kidneys to become jeopardized. This results in enhanced urine proteins (proteinuria) to show up in the blood of an affected pregnant woman. This makes the blood urine level check an important and timely one if kidney failure and costly dialysis is to be avoided.

Fortunately, the preeclampsia-like symptoms and the associated illness in a pregnant woman go away after child birth. However, it is always better to err on the safer side and identify the preeclampsia symptoms and use tests in time for diagnosis and take the treatment for it.