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Indexed under : Medicine / Diseases / G - L

Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of Unknowns Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of the Unknown

HELLP syndrome

HELLP syndrome is a life-threatening condition that can potentially complicate pregnancy. It is named for 3 features of the condition: Hemolysis, Elevated Liver enzyme levels, and Low Platelet levels. It typically occurs in the last 3 months of pregnancy (the third trimester) but can also start soon after delivery. A wide range of non-specific symptoms may be present in women with HELLP syndrome. Symptoms may include fatigue; malaise; fluid retention and excess weight gain; headache; nausea and vomiting; pain in the upper right or middle of the abdomen; blurry vision; and rarely, nosebleed or seizures.

Source : US NIH, NCATS

It affects around 0.5 to 0.9% of all pregnancies, i.e. many millions per year. About 70% of the cases develop before delivery, the majority between the 27th and 37th gestational weeks; the remainder within 48 hours after delivery.

The cause(s) of HELLP are currently unknown. though it's markedly more common in women who have pre-eclampsia or pregnancy induced hypertension (high blood pressure during pregnancy). Though some women develop HELLP syndrome without showing signs of these conditions

More technical information : BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth


Also see :Pre-eclampsiaplugin-autotooltip__plain plugin-autotooltip_bigPre-eclampsia

"Pre-eclampsia is a disorder of pregnancy characterized by the onset of high blood pressure and often a significant amount of protein in the urine. When it arises, the condition begins after 20 weeks of pregnancy. In severe cases of the disease there may…


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