More Preeclampsia News

Saturday, April 28, 2012
A new study is out dealing with the risk for recurrence of preeclampsia and outcome of subsequent pregnancies. Whew, what a mouth full! This is a huge concern for former preeclampsia mamas. The results were based on former preeclamptics and non-preeclamptics. (Is that a word? lol)

Thanks to Caryn, a moderator in the preeclampsia forums, for explaining the results in layman's terms for the rest of us. Here is her nifty chart:

Condition                            our (pre-e) odds             normotensive (no prior history of pre-e)odds
delivery before 37 weeks      15.2%                              5.7%
delivery before 34 weeks      3.8%                                0.8%
abruption                              1.7%                                0.2%
IUGR                                   2.8%                                0.9%
preeclampsia                        5.9%                                 0.8%

It goes on to say that depending on whether or not you had a combination of these things, your odds could be a lot higher. Caryn explained, "If you had preeclampsia and an abruption last time, your chances of preeclampsia and something going wrong this time are 10.2 times higher than normal. Technically, I think they call that 'a lot higher'. If you had preeclampsia and needed to be delivered before 34 weeks, chances things go wrong are 6.5x higher. If you are a chronic, 5.3x. If you are over 35, 4.3x."

Let's take a look at my conditions.

Kerry's Conditions
  • Delivery before 34 weeks
  • IUGR
  • Preeclampsia (possible HELLP) 
Hmmm. That's three. Had I not delivered before 34 weeks, I may have had only a 3.8% chance of it happening again, 2.8% chance of recurrence for the IUGR and 5.9% chance of recurrence for preeclampsia. This means my risks are at least 6.5% higher across the board. There's also the possibility I have chronic high blood pressure. That would be another 5.3%. Luckily, after losing 32 pounds, my blood pressure is actually going down. So, maybe this wouldn't be an issue.

Overall, these numbers still aren't as scary as what I was originally told. I just might have to bring this up at my next doctor's appointment. Who knows, right?


  1. Even though the odds are greater than the average normal pregnancy person, *most* people do go on to have healthy pregnancies. Especially us early onsetters. I had HELLP (the worst class) at 23 weeks, severe IUGR, severe preeclampsia, but made it to 36 weeks with no problems in my second pregnancy- no IUGR, no blood pressure issues at all. Stories like mine (horrible first pregnancy, relatively normal second) are more common than people who get sick again.

  2. Thanks for sharing this. I am a PA student but I haven't learn much about gynecology. I wish you luck with your adoption!

  3. Who knows?? is right. All you can do is do your due diligence, and learn as much about the disease as possible..then armed with information, seek out a professional and see what their take on it is. I think that after the loss of a baby, we tend to think we're going to be that fraction of a percent or whatever that gets struck again..but statistically, the odds might be better than originally thought.

    I commend you on your fantastic dedication to not only learning more about pre-E, but also your continuing weight loss.

  4. You just never know! I had HELLP and delivered my daughter stillborn at 23 weeks and a year and six days later delivered my second daughter kicking and screaming at 35 weeks.

  5. Wow, its interesting how things get crystal clear when broken down with numbers and lay terms. As a mother of two, I am looking at pregnancies with a different lens. Reading your blog is very enlightening.