Blood pressure: What are the symptoms of pre-eclampsia? Dangerous complications explained

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Risks of suffering from conditions related to high blood pressure increase as people get older. The elderly may encounter heart disease or heart attacks prompted by chart-topping pressure. Younger people aren’t as at-risk, but several conditions may prompt pressure to rise to uncomfortable levels.

What are the symptoms of pre-eclampsia?

Blood pressure spikes in younger adults have a range of potential causes.

These include:

  • Diabetes
  • Dehydration
  • Thyroid issues
  • Kidney disease
  • Nervous system issues
  • Sleep apnoea
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Poorly regulated blood pressure
  • Pregnancy

Pregnancy-related high blood pressure can create a condition known as pre-eclampsia.

Pregnant people may experience the condition within the second half of their nine-month term.

They could develop symptoms between 20 weeks in and in the time following birth.

Pre-eclampsia causes high blood pressure at first and increased protein levels in the urine.

Doctors are often the first to catch on, as people may not notice them under other pregnancy-related symptoms.

Pre-eclampsia symptoms may include:

  • Oedema – When fluid retention causes swelling in the feet, ankles, hands and face
  • Severe headaches
  • Vision problems
  • Pain below the ribs

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People should keep an eye out for pre-eclampsia in themselves or their partners.

The condition is often mild but could quickly become troublesome for expectant mothers and their children.

Developing babies may face preterm birth, growth restrictions, cardiovascular disease, organ damage and more.

Pre-eclampsia is also a precursor of eclampsia, which people risk if the initial condition is left unchecked.

Eclampsia adds a dangerous symptom – seizures – to the pre-eclampsia roster.

The more severe condition often comes without warning signs, according to health experts.

As such, it is vital people receive immediate attention for pre-eclampsia.

If eclampsia develops unchecked, doctors may need to deliver the child regardless of the stage of pregnancy.

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