Objective: To describe the maternal characteristics of pregnancy and perinatal outcome of primiparous women with preeclampsia, to determine the recurrence rate and to define the maternal risk factors for preeclampsia in subsequent pregnancies.
Methods: A retrospective cohort study. Two groups of patients were defined: the study group consisted of 380 primiparous women with preeclampsia, and in a control group of 385 primiparous women without preeclampsia. The patients were followed during their consecutive deliveries. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to determine the independent risk factors for the recurrence of preeclampsia in the second pregnancy.
Results: In the study and the control group there were a total of 1207 and 1293 deliveries, respectively. Of the 380 primiparous women in study group, 305 (80%) were identified as suffering from mild preeclampsia, 64 (17%) from severe preeclampsia, 10 (2.6%) from super imposed preeclampsia and only one (0.3%) had eclampsia. Primiparous with severe preeclampsia had a significantly higher rate of preterm delivery then those with mild preeclampsia (34 versus 11% respectively, P<0.0001). In addition, the study group had significantly higher rate of perinatal mortality (3.4 versus 0.3%, P=0.013) and perinatal complications. The recurrence rate of preeclampsia was significantly higher in the study group (25% versus 1.9%, P<0.0001). When adjusted for confounding variables, gestational diabetes was strongly associated with the recurrence of preeclampsia in the second pregnancy (OR 3.72 95% CI 1.45-9.53).
Conclusion: Primiparous women with preeclampsia are at an increased risk for recurrence in subsequent pregnancies. Gestational diabetes in primiparous women with preeclampsia is an independent risk factor for developing preeclampsia in the second pregnancy.