Severe morning sickness in early pregnancy 'puts Kate and other expectant mothers at more risk of pre-eclampsia'
Pregnant women who need hospital treatment before 12 weeks are 20 per cent more likely to suffer pre-eclampsia, study finds
Can lead to premature birth, still birth or smaller than average babyExperts say Kate should escape because her sickness came early
00:14 GMT, 30 January 2013
08:22 GMT, 30 January 2013
Increased risk: Pregnant women who suffer severe morning such as the Duchess of Cambridge, pictured leaving hospital in December, are more at risk of pre-eclampsia, a study has found
Severe morning sickness that blighted the early weeks of the Duchess of Cambridge’s pregnancy could cause complications for mother and baby, doctors said yesterday.
Those who, like Kate, need hospital treatment for the sickness before 12 weeks of pregnancy are around 20 per cent more likely to be at risk of pre-eclampsia, a study has found.
But experts said they hoped the timing of Kate’s sickness, which came early in her pregnancy, meant she would escape the most worrying consequences because the condition is most hazardous when it occurs during the middle three months.
In early December, the Duchess was admitted to King Edward VII Hospital suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum, a rare disorder that triggers severe vomiting during pregnancy.
Kate, whose baby is due in July, was forced to cancel engagements following repeated bouts of sickness and dehydration.
But Palace officials say she is now making a steady recovery and she has been seen out and about in public looking much better.
Her condition is most common in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, after which the symptoms ease in most sufferers.
But the new research suggests that when the condition occurs during the second trimester, it can lead to serious complications in later pregnancy that need close monitoring.
The complications include pre-eclampsia, which raises the woman’s blood pressure leading to strokes and even death, premature separation of the placenta from the womb lining before birth, and having a small baby.
The study, published in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, examined data from the Swedish medical birth register between 1997 and 2009.
Data from 1,155,033 women showed that
1.1 per cent of them suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum before they
were 22 weeks pregnant. The condition is caused by high levels of the
pregnancy hormone, human chorionic gonadotropin, and a woman’s
sensitivity to it.
compared data from women having normal pregnancies to those who needed
admission to hospital for treatment in the first or second trimester of
Danger: Pre-eclampsia is more common in first-time pregnancies and can lead to premature birth, still birth and babies being born smaller than average
They found a slightly increased risk of almost 20 per cent in the rate of pre-eclampsia in women who were hospitalised with sickness before 12 weeks of pregnancy.
Pre-eclampsia is more common in first-time pregnancies and can lead to premature birth, stillbirth and babies being smaller than average.
As many as one in 20 first-time mothers develop pre-eclampsia, while around 20 women die each year from conditions linked to high blood pressure. It is thought to claim the lives of 600 babies a year in the UK.