Preeclampsia

This discussion is on preeclampsia. I do not have personal experience with this, however I do have many friends who have had to go through this. Many women are affected by this pregnancy induced hypertension which sometimes results in early induction or c-section.

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Discuss the condition preeclampsia in pregnancy. It’s potential risk factors, outcomes, and dietary management. Plan a one day menu that includes foods important for the management of this disorder.

Preeclampsia in pregnancy has many risk factors which must to be treated by a high-risk obstetrician. Many of those symptoms include hypertension (high blood pressure), protein in the urine, nausea, severe headaches and blurred or spotty vision. These symptoms can lead to even bigger risks of preterm delivery, eclamptic seizures, and even death if left untreated. Our text states on page 137, “Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy are the second leading cause of maternal mortality in the United States, affecting 6-10% of all pregnancies” (Brown, 2011). Preeclampsia usually develops after the 20th week in pregnancy unless the patient already has chronic hypertension prior to pregnancy. The risks are red flags for all doctors and if rest, changes in diet, and medication cannot minimize or extinguish preeclampsia and its symptoms then the only cure is delivery of the baby. Those risks include first pregnancy for mom, obesity, chronic hypertension, over 35 years old, multiples in pregnancy, prior history of pregnancy, and more. This poses a risk of delivering a baby before term, or 37 weeks, because the baby’s lungs may not be fully developed and is at risk for further respiratory issues. If preeclampsia is caught early enough and treatment has begun, some women receive two betamethasone shots, a special steroid that helps the baby’s lungs develop more quickly, 24 hours apart. Many women are put on bed rest and discontinue working so as to keep their blood pressure at a decent rate and lower the risk of protein in their urine. Most outcomes of preeclampsia are positive with a healthy mom and baby. Sometimes mom may continue to experience hypertension up to 12 days postpartum without further issues while a small percentage need further treatment.

Dietary management is very important for women who are diagnosed with preeclampsia. There are many vitamins and food, especially high in protein, which can keep this diagnosis at bay or even prevent it prior to 20 weeks. Women who are obese are at a might higher risk of vitamin deficiency so taking a prenatal vitamin is vital, along with an extra vitamin D supplement. Along with those vitamins, a one day menu which is appropriate for a woman with preeclampsia may look like this:

Breakfast: 1c of 2% milk with two eggs over medium and two slices of wheat toast with light butter

Snack: strawberry/banana yogurt with 12oz glass of OJ

Lunch: tuna salad sandwich on sourdough bread with 1c of mixed berries, 12oz water and handful of salted peanuts

Snack: 1/4c of cottage cheese, 6 carrot sticks and 12oz water

Dinner: 5oz grilled chicken with corn on the cob, 1/4c wild rice, 1/4c baked kale and 8oz glass of 2% milk

Snack: granola bar with 12oz water

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