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(ĭklămp`sēə), term applied to toxic complications that can occur late in pregnancy. Toxemiatoxemia
, disease state caused by the presence in the blood of bacterial toxins or other harmful substances. The effects of the bacterial toxins known as endotoxins are relatively uniform, regardless of which bacterial species the toxin comes from, and are separate from the
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 of pregnancy occurs in 10% to 20% of pregnant women; symptoms include headache, vertigo, visual disturbances, vomiting, hypertension, and edema. The four categories of hypertension during pregnancy are pre-eclampsia, eclampsia, chronic hypertension, and transient hypertension. Pre-eclampsia, which occurs late in pregnancy, is characterized by decreased cardiac output and increased blood vessel resistance. It may be prevented with calcium supplements and low-dose aspirin, and a cesarian section is often safer than natural childbirth. Only 5% of of women with pre-eclampsia progress to eclampsia, which is accompanied by convulsions and coma. To avoid renal and cardiovascular damage of the mother and to prevent fetal damage, the condition is treated by termination of pregnancy.



a serious disease occurring during pregnancy, labor, or the postpartum period. Eclampsia is a late stage of toxemia of pregnancy. The condition is characterized by convulsions that develop in a definite sequence. Slight fibrillar contractions of the facial muscles (15–30 seconds) are followed by tonic spasms of the total skeletal musculature and loss of consciousness (15–20 seconds). Clonic muscular spasms of the trunk and limbs occur, and, finally, the woman lapses into a brief or prolonged coma. Consciousness returns gradually. In particularly severe cases, eclampsia may occur without convulsions (comatous forms). Eclampsia is often manifested by only a few convulsions, and high blood pressure may not be a symptom. Death may occur during or after convulsions as a result of pulmonary edema, hemorrhages into the brain, and asphyxia. The fetus often dies in utero from hypoxia. The prognosis depends on the number and duration of the convulsions or on the duration of the coma.

Current treatment of eclampsia is based on principles developed by the Soviet obstetrician-gynecologist V. V. Stroganov in 1928. Total physical and mental rest is prescribed. Functioning of the vital organs is restored: Drugs are administered to decrease the excitability of the central nervous system, to lower blood pressure, and to stimulate urination. Oxygen is administered in cases of pronounced hypoxia, and labor is induced quickly but cautiously. The patient should not be moved during convulsions or while in a coma. Prompt hospitalization is required as soon as consciousness is regained. Prophylaxis includes the prevention of advanced toxemia and prompt hospital treatment of neuropathy and preeclampsia.


Nikolaev, A. P. Pozdnie toksikozy beremennykh. Moscow, 1972.



A disorder occurring during the latter half of pregnancy, characterized by elevated blood pressure, edema, proteinuria, and convulsions or coma.


1. Pathol a toxic condition of unknown cause that sometimes develops in the last three months of pregnancy, characterized by high blood pressure, abnormal weight gain and convulsions
2. another name for milk fever (in cattle)
References in periodicals archive ?
The eclampsia group had more number of aged mothers, primigravida with generalised and pedal oedema and also proteinuria, whereas mothers with severe pre-eclampsia and mild pre-eclampsia were in the lower age group with or without pedal oedema and proteinuria, Table 2.
The mortality ratio due to eclampsia increased from 39 per 100,000 live births in BMMS 2010 to 46 per 100,000 live births in BMMS 2016 while the proportionate contribution of eclampsia to all maternal deaths increased from 20 percent to 24 percent," he added.
A total of 188 patients were admitted as cases of eclampsia constituting 3.
The findings could lead to inclusion of the doppler study of uterine arteries in routine anomaly scan for timely diagnosis of pre eclampsia, thus reducing perinatal morbidity and mortality.
Frequency and percentage were calculated for qualitative data like placental abruption, pre-eclampsia, eclampsia, diabetes, and cord prolapse.
Names of patients with the diagnosis of eclampsia were identified from the 'birth register' and information retrieved from the relevant hospital records.
The present study has been undertaken to compare the changes in maternal serum lipoprotein in normal pregnancy and primiparous patients with eclampsia.
Standardised clinical protocols for the management of severe preeclampsia and eclampsia have been shown to reduce complications associated with this hypertensive disorder.
Since the publication of the collaborative multicentre study on eclampsia in 1995, magnesium sulphate has remained the most ideal anticonvulsant drug for the treatment of eclampsia, with a maternal death rate of 4% (11,12).
In season three, eclampsia changed the cast of characters forever and the season will have to deal with the fallout from the resulting death.