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Preeclampsia: Checkups and Monitoring

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Preeclampsia: Checkups and Monitoring

Overview

Preeclampsia is usually found during regular prenatal checkups. That's one reason it's important to go to all of your prenatal visits. Tests are done at each visit to check for preeclampsia, including:

  • Blood pressure reading.

    Blood pressure is always watched closely during pregnancy.

  • Weight measurement.

    Rapid weight gain can be a sign of preeclampsia.

If you're at high risk for preeclampsia, you may also have other tests, including:

  • Urine tests.

    Too much protein in the urine can be a sign of kidney damage caused by preeclampsia.

  • Blood tests.

    These may be done to check for problems such as HELLP syndrome and kidney damage.

Follow-up testing

If tests suggest that you have preeclampsia, you'll be carefully checked for the rest of your pregnancy. Your baby's health also will be closely watched. The more severe your preeclampsia is, the more often you'll need testing. This might range from once a week to daily.

At prenatal visits, you may have a physical exam to check for signs that preeclampsia is getting worse. You may also have urine tests and blood tests to check for blood problems and kidney damage.

Tests to check on your baby may include:

  • Fetal heart monitoring to record your baby's heart rate.
  • Fetal ultrasound to check the baby, the placenta, and the amount of amniotic fluid.
  • Doppler ultrasound to see how well the placenta is working.

Related Information

Credits

Current as of: July 11, 2023

Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board
All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.

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