This pregnancy complication costs the US $2B annually

The pregnancy disorder preeclampsia can double the risk of adverse health events post-birth among expectant mothers and their babies, according to a study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

For the study, researchers examined 2012 data on preeclampsia from numerous population-based and administrative data sets, including the National Center for Health Statistics Vital Statistics on Births database, the U.S. Health Care Cost and Utilization Project database and a commercial claims data set.

Here are four study findings.

  1. Preeclampsia increases the likelihood of an adverse event from 4.6 percent to 10.1 percent for mothers and from 7.8 percent to 15.4 percent for infants.

  1. The most common adverse events in mothers were hemorrhaging and low blood platelet counts. Preeclampsia was most closely linked to respiratory distress syndrome and sepsis in infants.

  1. The condition lowers gestational age by 1.7 weeks.

  1. Preeclampsia costs the U.S. healthcare system an average of $1.03 billion for mothers and $1.15 billion for infants during the first 12 months after birth.

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