Hypertension in Pregnancy

While hypertension itself presents concerns during pregnancy, adverse effects from progression to pre-eclampsia/eclampsia along with HELLP syndrome present the primary concern - Richard Luger MD

Hypertension in Pregnancy

image by: Pan African Conference on Hypertensive Disorders in Pregnancy

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Hypertension in Pregnancy

HTN is the most common medical disorder during pregnancy, with a prevalence of 5-10% of all pregnancies worldwide. HTN and antihypertensive drugs have adverse effects on both the mother and the foetus. Management of HTN during pregnancy needs expertise in the field of high-risk pregnancy and cardiovascular diseases, which is why a combined team of obstetricians and cardiologists is an important prerequisite...

The nomenclature of the different forms of HDP depends on the timing of the first diagnosis of HTN and the persistence of high BP after delivery.

The following forms are described in the recent European guidelines:

  • Pre-existing hypertension

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  Hypertension in Pregnancy

Hypertension (HTN) is the most commonly encountered disorder during pregnancy. High blood pressure has a negative impact on the mother and the foetus, which is why early diagnosis and proper control are mandatory to avoid complications. There are many forms of HTN disorder during pregnancy. The threshold for initiation of antihypertensive medications differs for gestational and chronic HTN during pregnancy, being lower in gestational HTN. Pre-eclampsia/eclampsia syndrome is a severe form of gestational HTN, which is only curable by delivery of the foetus. Management of HTN during pregnancy is challenging and it requires collaboration between obstetricians and cardiologists.


Development of hypertension during pregnancy is associated with high maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality. In the US, hypertension during pregnancy results in maternal mortality rates of 2-7% each year.

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