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A misdiagnosis of HELLP Syndrome could be life-threatening

Pregnancy, though common, is not without its risks. One of the issues that may arise is HELLP Syndrome, which is a series of symptoms that may result in life-threatening complications for the mother and baby.

Women with HELLP Syndrome may have a low platelet count, elevated liver enzymes and hemolysis, which is the destruction of the red blood cells. With this syndrome, it is possible to suffer from serious problems such as high blood pressure, bleeding and other issues that may become life-threatening very quickly.

What are the signs of HELLP Syndrome?

HELLP Syndrome may be a variation of preeclampsia, but it’s not clear. It is known that around .2% to .6% of all pregnancies are impacted by this syndrome, however.

Women who have preeclampsia during pregnancy should be monitored for HELLP Syndrome. However, it is possible for women to develop this condition even if they don’t have a preeclampsia diagnosis. Around 4% to 12% of women who have diagnosed preeclampsia will develop this condition. Usually, it develops during the third trimester or within seven days after delivery. That said, it can develop prior to the third trimester or longer after delivery as well.

How do doctors diagnose HELLP Syndrome?

The physician should order tests to check on a mother’s bilirubin level, lactate dehydrogenase levels and platelet count. Other tests can be ordered as well.

If the tests come back positive for HELLP Syndrome, then the baby’s delivery may be pushed up if it has not arrived yet. This is because symptoms tend to subside within two to three days of delivery. If it is not possible to deliver yet, then medications, blood transfusions and fetal monitoring are used, among other treatment options.

Since this is a dangerous condition, most mothers with it are admitted to the hospital and placed on bed rest for consistent monitoring. Missing the signs of this condition can result in the death of the mother or child, so it’s essential that women receive appropriate care as soon as possible. This is not a particularly rare condition, so there is no excuse for a misdiagnosis with property testing.