Health Questions and Answers

Question: Does preeclampsia recur in subsequent pregnancies?

Answer:

Yes. If preeclampsia occurs in the first pregnancy, there is a 25% chance of recurrence in subsequent pregnancies. The recurrence rate appears to be affected by gestational age at onset in the first pregnancy, severity, underlying maternal diseases, and underlying obstetric diseases. Women who develop preeclampsia early in pregnancy, or who develop severe preeclampsia; those with chronic medical conditions (e.g., chronic hypertension, renal disease); and those with no apparent fetal contribution (such as fetal aneuploidy) are at greater risk to develop preeclampsia in the future.
Multiparous patients who have had preeclampsia have a recurrence rate of up to 50% with subsequent pregnancies.

Reference: American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists: Diagnosis and Management of Preeclampsia and Eclampsia. ACOG Practice Bulletin No. 33. Obstet Gynecol 99:159-167, 2002.

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