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Preeclampsia - Exams and Tests

Preeclampsia is usually found during regular prenatal checkups.

Routine prenatal tests

Certain tests are given at each prenatal visit to check for preeclampsia. These include a:

Tests for women considered high-risk for preeclampsia

Other tests may also be used to check for signs of preeclampsia, including:

Tests for women who have preeclampsia

If results from one or more of the above tests suggest that you have preeclampsia, you and your baby will be closely monitored for the rest of your pregnancy.

Testing is more frequent and extensive when preeclampsia is severe and the pregnancy is far from full-term (less than 36 weeks).

You may have a physical exam to check for signs that preeclampsia is getting worse.

You may also have:

  • Blood tests to check for blood abnormalities and kidney damage.
  • A creatinine clearance test.

Tests for women who have eclampsia

If you have a seizure (eclampsia), one or more of the following tests may be done after delivery:

Tests for the baby

If you get preeclampsia, the baby's health also will be closely watched. The more severe your condition, the more often you'll need testing, ranging from once a week to daily.

Tests commonly used include:

Less often, amniocentesis is used to check fetal well-being if preterm delivery is being considered. The test shows whether the baby's lungs are mature enough for birth.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: January 21, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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