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High blood pressure means the pressure of the blood inside your arteries is at a level higher than normal. This can create health risks at any time, and it is even more of a risk during pregnancy. If not treated, it can cause serious problems for you and your baby.
High blood pressure is also known as hypertension.
Your blood pressure has two numbers:
During pregnancy, you have high blood pressure if your top number is more than 140 and the bottom number is more than 90.
There are two types of high blood pressure:
With either type of high blood pressure, preeclampsia can occur. Preeclampsia means that, in addition to high blood pressure, there is protein in your urine. Your health care provider will monitor you closely.
Tell your health care provider if you have any of the following:
If not treated, preeclampsia can be life threatening to you or your baby. Call your health care provider if you have any of the above signs.
The cause of high blood pressure during pregnancy is unknown. However, you are at a higher risk than other women if you:
To test for preeclampsia at each prenatal visit, the staff will check your weight and blood pressure, and test for protein in your urine. Your care provider is concerned about rapid weight gain, presence of protein in your urine, and increased blood pressure.
The test results help your health care provider know if you are developing preeclampsia. If you do develop preeclampsia, it can be treated.
Treatment depends on if your symptoms are mild or severe.
If you have any questions or concerns, please talk with your health care provider.
Allina Patient Education, High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy, ob-ahc-12307
Allina Patient Education experts
Allina Health Home Health - Mother & Newborn nurse checks a woman's blood pressure and answers questions about high blood pressure during pregnancy.