Diagnosis and management of preeclampsia in community settings in low and middle-income countries

J Family Med Prim Care. 2015 Oct-Dec;4(4):501-6. doi: 10.4103/2249-4863.174265.


Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy contribute significantly to maternal mortality and morbidity. Preeclampsia belongs to the spectrum of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy and if undiagnosed and/or untreated leads to fatal consequences for both the mother and the baby. Early detection and prevention of preeclampsia is limited by uncertainty in the knowledge about its etiopathogenesis. While much work has been done in establishing clinical guidelines for management of preeclampsia in the hospital or tertiary care settings, there is considerable lack of work in the domain of evidence-based guidelines for screening, identification and management of preeclampsia at the community-level. The article reviews these issues with special considerations and to challenges faced in low and middle-income countries. There is a need to focus on low-cost screening and interventions in the community to achieve a significant impact on preventable maternal and fetal mortality in order to control the burden of preeclampsia significantly as well as investing on more research at primary care level to improve the evidence base for community-level interventions.

Keywords: Eclampsia; health system; magnesium sulphate; preeclampsia.

Publication types

  • Review