Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy: definition, management, and out-of-office blood pressure measurement

Hypertens Res. 2022 Aug;45(8):1298-1309. doi: 10.1038/s41440-022-00965-6. Epub 2022 Jun 20.


Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy increase the risk of adverse maternal and fetal outcomes. In 2018, the Japanese classification of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy was standardized with those of other countries, and a hypertensive disorder of pregnancy was considered to be present if hypertension existed during pregnancy and up to 12 weeks after delivery. Strategies for the prevention of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy have become much clearer, but further research is needed on appropriate subjects and methods of administration, and these have not been clarified in Japan. Although guidelines for the use of antihypertensive drugs are also being studied and standardized with those of other countries, the use of calcium antagonists before 20 weeks of gestation is still contraindicated in Japan because of the safety concerns that were raised regarding possible fetal anomalies associated with their use at the time of their market launch. Chronic hypertension is now included in the definition of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, and blood pressure measurement is a fundamental component of the diagnosis of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. Out-of-office blood pressure measurements, including ambulatory and home blood pressure measurements, are important for pregnant and nonpregnant women. Although conditions such as white-coat hypertension and masked hypertension have been reported, determining their occurrence in pregnancy is complicated by the gestational week. This narrative review focused on recent reports on hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, including those related to blood pressure measurement and classification.

Keywords: Antihypertensive Agents; Blood Pressure; Hypertension; Masked Hypertension; Pregnancy-Induced; White-Coat Hypertension.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Blood Pressure
  • Blood Pressure Determination
  • Blood Pressure Monitoring, Ambulatory
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension* / diagnosis
  • Hypertension* / drug therapy
  • Hypertension* / epidemiology
  • Hypertension, Pregnancy-Induced* / diagnosis
  • Hypertension, Pregnancy-Induced* / drug therapy
  • Masked Hypertension* / diagnosis
  • Pregnancy
  • White Coat Hypertension* / diagnosis
  • White Coat Hypertension* / epidemiology