Preeclampsia Awareness Month May 2021; Act Early And Screen Early To Reduce the Risk
There are numerous dedications, national food days, and other events going on throughout the month of May, but women who are pregnant or plan to be might want to note one in particular: Preeclampsia Awareness Month. As the name suggests, the objective is to draw attention to the fact that preeclampsia affects around 5-8 percent of all pregnancies. This medical condition, which is characterized by high blood pressure and other indicators, can lead to serious and sometimes fatal complications and birth injuries to both mother and child.
The theme for 2021 is simple: Act Early! Screen Early! – since preeclampsia progresses rapidly if left untreated. An overview of some basics regarding this medical condition may help you in raising the topic in a conversation with your doctor.
Three Keys to Understanding Preeclampsia
Preeclampsia Awareness Month builds upon other efforts for patient advocacy, research efforts, and prevention. Despite the success of these initiatives in drawing attention to the condition, the rate of preeclampsia in the US has risen 25 percent since 2000. To reduce these figures, it is necessary to address preeclampsia based upon three factors:
- Symptoms: An expectant mother may not experience symptoms right away after developing preeclampsia, which typically occurs around 20 weeks into the pregnancy. Because of the quick progression, you must recognize and discuss the symptoms with your doctor. The first is high blood pressure, so diligent monitoring is essential. In addition, take note of the following signs of preeclampsia:
- Blurred vision or sensitivity to light
- Nausea or vomiting
- Decreased urine output
- Shortness of breath
- Sudden weight gain or swelling in the face and hands
- Upper abdominal pain
Keep in mind that some of these health issues are common in a normal pregnancy, but do not overlook them as possible signs of preeclampsia.
- Risk Factors: Preeclampsia can develop in an otherwise healthy woman with no history of high blood pressure, but there are certain factors that increase the likelihood of problems. Some risk factors include:
- Chronic hypertension or a history of preeclampsia
- First pregnancies, in which preeclampsia is most likely to develop
- The first pregnancy with a new partner
- Age, with very young pregnant women and those over 35 years old being most at risk
- Long intervals between pregnancies
- Risk Assessment: If you have symptoms or possess any of the risk factors of preeclampsia, make it a priority to discuss the essential screenings with your physician. There are tests at 11-14 weeks of pregnancy that can determine the woman’s risk of developing this condition, as well as a blood test in the second and third trimesters.
Speak to a Florida Medical Malpractice Attorneys About Birth Injuries
From this overview regarding preeclampsia, you can see the importance of discussing your concerns with your health care provider. However, if you have concerns about your rights after a misdiagnosis or medical error related to preeclampsia, please contact the Miami medical malpractice lawyers at Freidin Brown, P.A. We can set up a free case evaluation at our offices. Once we review your circumstances, we can advise you on options for a medical malpractice or birth injuries claim.