Keywords : eclampsia
Iraqi Postgraduate Medical Journal,
2013, Volume 12, Issue 2, Pages 277-281
Eclampsia is a life-threatening complication of pregnancy for both the baby and the mother. Research is
underway to understand this complex condition and to improve the treatments that are currently used to
control it as it is a preventable complication of pre-eclampsia.
The study reviews the cases of eclampsia managed at Elwiya teaching Hospital with respect to
incidence, management, maternal and perinatal outcome.
This prospective observational study was carried out in the department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
at Elwiya Teaching Hospital – Baghdad-Iraq. Fifty two cases of eclamptic fits were dealt with from the
of January till the 31
of December 2008. Pregnant patients with other convulsive disorders and
more than 7 days postpartum were excluded from the study. All the patients included were evaluated by
detailed history (taken from the attendants). Management was according to basic protocol for
eclampsia; stabilization of patients, anticonvulsive therapy Magnesium sulfate, phenytoin and/or
diazepam and early delivery. A team of specialists and trained nurses were needed in the intensive care
unit to deal with eclamptic mothers.
During the year 2008, total number of deliveries from the 1
Eclampsia is one of the fatal complications of preeclampsia
which is a multisystem disorder; it
presents a challenge to obstetricians and other
physicians. Eclampsia is defined as seizure activity
unrelated to other cerebral conditions in a pregnant
woman with pre-eclampsia. The condition was
known to the ancient Greeks, who named it
eclampsia. It has been prevalent since the time of
Hippocrates; it remains an important cause of
maternal mortality throughout the world,
accounting for about 50000 deaths worldwide.
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at
Elwiya Teaching Hospital – Baghdad .
of January till the 31
An eclamptic seizure occurs in 0.5% of mildly preeclamptic
pregnancies and 2% of severe preeclamptics.
of December was
12154, of these patients 52 presented with eclamptic fit with incidence rate of 4.28 per 1000 deliveries.
The distribution of cases regarding the seasons was more in winter. 35 patients (67.31%) had poor
antenatal care, 17 (32.69%) had good antenatal care. Four patients had history of eclampsia in their
previous pregnancies. All the patients gave history of imminent eclampsia; two of them had blindness
also; albumin in urine was negative in two cases only. Serious maternal complications occurred in
28(53.84%) cases. Eight of the neonates died due to severe RDS.
Eclampsia is still present and common in our locality; we need better antenatal care to predict pregnant
ladies liable to develop eclamptic fit in order to decrease the incidence of eclampsia complicating