What is Gestational Hypertension?

Gestational hypertension otherwise known as Pregnancy Induced Hypertension is a complication of pregnancy characterized with high blood pressure.


For  a true diagnosis to be made,  5 Key major factors must be present:

1) The blood pressure must be more than 140/90, at least on two occasions. with six or more hours intervals in between the measurements

2) If the pregnant woman is diabetic or have a chronic kidney (renal) disease, the
blood pressure must be more than 130/80, on at least two occasions, with six
or more hours in between the measurements

3) The elevated blood pressure, 140/90 or more, must be obtained after the 20 weeks of pregnancy

4) The blood pressure must be accurately measured with a properly calibrated, and well maintained blood pressure monitor.


5) The pregnant woman must have been previously established to have normal blood pressure readings before conceiving.

If the above  5 conditions are present, then, the pregnant lady is said to have a true or pure Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH)

Gestational hypertension ( GH ) is one of the complications that belongs to a new and modern groupings called ... Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy (HDP)

Gestational hypertension is not the same as preeclampsia or preeclamptic toxemia of pregnancy...In Pre eclampsia, apart from high blood pressure, the pregnant woman also has protein in the urine.


In normal situation, protein should not be in urine.

Pregnancy Induced Hypertension causes are currently unknown.

  Other key known Facts  are:

a) About 14 - 25 percent of pregnant women with GH will eventually develop pre-eclampsia

b) Gestational Hypertension (GH) usually resolves itself, few weeks after the delivery of the baby

c) If proper and appropriate care is taken during pregnancy, most pregnant women, are able to deliver a healthy baby despite... this medical condition

d) GH can re occur in subsequent pregnancies of those women, who have had it before.

e) Gestational Hypertension is present in about 6 % of all pregnancies.

Gestational Hypertension Symptoms

Gestational hypertension symptoms are not common, but there may be

  • Headaches
  • Tiredness ... more than usual for a pregnant woman
  • Nose bleed
  • Blurred vision
  • Vomiting.... ruled out from other causes

What is Late PostPartum Hypertension?

Postpartum Hypertension is a rare situation, in which a pregnant woman, who had normal BP throughout her pregnancy, and the delivery of the baby.... then develops blood pressure higher than 140/90 few weeks after delivery..... then comes back to normal blood pressure readings within  (12) twelve months, after her baby's delivery.

What is  Transient Hypertension of Pregnancy ?

As noted above, Gestational hypertension normally resolved after few weeks of the delivery of the baby... and in most cases by the 12 th week after delivery...but if the elevated blood pressure values returns to normal values, just after delivery.... this is termed as Transient Hypertension of Pregnancy.

Prevention of Gestational Hypertension

 Prevention of Gestational Hypertension is a very important goal to set, and if achieved, the benefits are priceless, it will lead to :

  • healthy  new mother
  • a healthy baby or babies
  • a very happy family   

Since the causes of this medical complication in unknown at the moment, the prevention strategies will include the use of nutrition, strict personal responsibility and vigilance to watch out for unusual symptoms.

Please ensure you follow strictly all your antenatal appointments and prenatal care schedules

Watch out for any unusual vaginal spotting or bleeding during pregnancy and report it promptly to your obs /gynecologist or pregnancy doctor

Your doctor must approve any, and all your "keep fit exercises" but you must remain active as before pregnancy

 Avoid physical, emotional and psychological stress as much as possible
     
Report any unusual facial swelling during pregnancy to your care givers.

Report any sudden or unusual leg swelling
     
Ensure you are not constipated... eat high fiber diet and drink lots of water, to avoid constipation while pregnant.

It is always a good idea to supplement your diet with prenatal vitamins and pregnancy supplements but make sure, they are approved by your doctor... there are quite a few bad ones out there.

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