Neurologic Complications in the Critically Ill Pregnant Patient

Eelco F. M. Wijdicks

in Neurologic Complications of Critical Illness

Third edition

Published on behalf of © Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research

Published in print May 2009 | ISBN: 9780195371093
Published online April 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199322886 | DOI:

Series: Contemporary Neurology Series

Neurologic Complications in the Critically Ill Pregnant Patient

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Few pregnant women become critically ill, and the risk is estimated at 3–4 per 1000 deliveries. 1–5 Yet, a pregnant woman slipping into a life-threatening condition remains one of the most trying of all presentations. Pregnancy-specific disorders such as eclampsia, HELLP (hemolysis, elevated liver enzymes, and low platelet count) syndrome, amniotic fluid embolism, and neurologic manifestations of tocolytic agents are the most common causes of admission to the ICU. Obstetric admissions to the ICU are peripartum emergencies and include obstetric hemorrhage due to uterine atony or uncontrolled hypertension. 1–5 These disorders are the main focus of this chapter. Other critical illnesses in pregnancy, such as sepsis, are not different in its presentation and are discussed in Chapter 6. Neurologists should work in concert with gynecologists and attain a working knowledge of these illnesses of pregnancy. In critically ill obstetric patients, the objective of delivery of a viable fetus remains highly probable, but there is the potential for a serious impact on maternal mortality. 6

Chapter.  5081 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neurology

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