Eclampsia: still a problem in Bangladesh

MedGenMed. 2004 Oct 8;6(4):52.


This descriptive study, conducted at Dhaka Medical College and Hospital, Bangladesh, includes 2956 consecutive eclamptic patients who were admitted between 1998 and 2000 and evaluates their outcomes after treatment with magnesium sulfate. Although magnesium sulfate controls convulsion efficiently, death from eclampsia remains high in our country. Thus, a second purpose of this study was to identify additional factors responsible for death from eclampsia. Among 32,999 obstetric patients admitted to the hospital during the years 1998 to 2000, 2956 were eclamptic, yielding an incidence of 9%. The antepartum/intrapartum and postpartum incidences of eclampsia were 80% and 20%, respectively. Among the patients with eclampsia, 79% had good prognosis without any added complication except convulsion, and 21% had other complications. For the period 1998 to 2000, the rate of maternal death from eclampsia was 8.6%, which was lower than that of the immediate past year (1997) for which the mortality was 16%. Changing the protocol from diazepam to magnesium sulfate for control of convulsion significantly reduced the incidence of death. But reduction of the risk of death was difficult when patients had developed complications. Most of the patients in the group who had complications died (98%); these complications developed as a result of a delayed decision for treatment. Therefore, efforts should be directed at developing awareness to receive treatment at an appropriate time to prevent the development of eclampsia and to reduce the mortality from eclampsia and its complications.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Anticonvulsants / therapeutic use*
  • Bangladesh / epidemiology
  • Eclampsia / drug therapy*
  • Eclampsia / mortality*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnesium Sulfate / therapeutic use*
  • Pregnancy
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anticonvulsants
  • Magnesium Sulfate