The Real Housewives of Atlanta beauty queen Kenya Moore recently revealed she was suffering from preeclampsia when she gave an update on her pregnancy on her Instagram Stories. "Tests confirmed I do have preeclampsia today. I will have to deliver [Baby Daly] early but I'm being monitored to determine when. Thank you for all your love and well wishes...I gained 17 lbs in ONE week due to severe swelling and water retention, high blood pressure, and excess protein in urine. This is NOT normal! I took more tests. Baby is fine but if [tests] come back higher [Baby Daly] will have to come same day," she wrote. Kenya added,"Staying positive. To my pregnant sisters please go to your visits and tell the doctor of any drastic changes. Thank God I have great doctors."
Similarly, Kim Kardashian welcomed her third child, Chicago, with Kanye West via surrogate because of numerous complications she suffered through during her first two pregnancies — one being preeclampsia. Her doctors decided to induce labor five weeks early.
When pregnant with her twins, Mariah Carey was induced at 35 weeks due to the risk of seizures from preeclampsia. Beyoncé spent a month on bed rest before undergoing an emergency C-section in 2017 due to preeclampsia while pregnant with twins Rumi and Sir.
Dr. Nicole Avena, PhD, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, explained why the pregnancy complication is so common and how it can sometimes turn life-threatening.
“Preeclampsia is a condition that affects about 5 to 8 percent of pregnancies. It is characterized by high blood pressure and protein in the urine, but in more severe cases, it can have some pretty serious physical symptoms, such as blurred vision, pain, and headaches,” Dr. Avena explained.
“Preeclampsia can be dangerous to both the mom and baby because it can lead to eclampsia, which is a life-threatening condition that can cause seizures or death,” she expanded. “Fortunately, eclampsia is rare in the developed nations these days due to good pre-natal monitoring. Another condition that can be caused by preeclampsia is HELLP syndrome, which causes the liver malfunctioning and blot clotting issues in pregnant women. The baby is at risk when mom develops preeclampsia because the placenta may not receive enough blood, which means that nourishment and oxygen to the baby is reduced.”
There are ways to try to get ahead of it if you are diagnosed with mild preeclampsia: Rest often (on your left side to take the weight of the baby off your major blood vessels), have regular checkups with your doctor, consume less sodium, and increase water consumption. But, most importantly, get monitored often by your doctor.
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