What happens in the next pregnancy?

Fortunately, most mothers who have suffered even severe forms of Pre Eclampsia in their first pregnancies have perfectly normal subsequent pregnancies. Nevertheless, there is a small risk that the condition will recur, and so women who have suffered Pre Eclampsia in a first pregnancy should be monitored more closely and more frequently than usual in subsequent pregnancies. If Pre Eclampsia does recur, it usually does so in a milder form and at a later time in the pregnancy than on the first occasion.

However, women who have suffered the HELLP syndrome form of Pre Eclampsia do seem to have a higher recurrence risk in subsequent pregnancies, with some studies suggesting as many as 25% of these women suffering such recurrences.

Furthermore, women with medical problems such as chronic hypertension, renal disease, diabetes, lupus and other autoantibody problems, and certain forms of inherited blood clotting disorders may also be at particular risk of recurrent Pre Eclampsia in their pregnancies.

Medical information supplied by:
Professor Shaun Brennecke
Director of Perinatal Medicine and University of Melbourne Department Head of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the Royal Women's Hospital, Melbourne