Pregnancy Induced Hypertension

Understand Pregnancy Induced Hypertension


Pregnancy Induced Hypertension: The Causes, Treatment and Complications

Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH) or Gestational Hypertension usually develops after 20 weeks of gestation without proteinuria (presence of protein in the urine) or other preeclampsia signs. It is also described as having a blood pressure above 140/90 mmHg.

Causes of Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH)


A diet high in sodium may be one of the reasons for a high blood pressure during pregnancy. Also, a lack of some of the minerals like zinc, calcium, as well as protein and calories in the diet.


The genes also play a major role in acquiring this kind of hypertension. If your mother has had it when she was pregnant, the more chances you have of acquiring it too.

Placenta problems

Incorrect placental implantation may also be one of the causes for PIH. A lack in the transport of oxygen to the fetus due to a malfunctioning placenta may also be another cause of PIH.

Treatments of Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH)

Bed rest

Bed rest is essential because overexertion on everyday activities may cause the blood pressure to increase.


Eat a healthier diet that is more on fruits, vegetables and protein. Limit the use of salt as this can cause blood pressure to spike too.


There are certain medications that your health care provider may be able to give you control your blood pressure while pregnant. Another drug is given, the corticosteroids, to hasten the fetus’ lung maturity, in case a Cesarean section is to be performed. The drug helps the baby to survive better in its external environment once delivered.


It may be best for the patient to be admitted in the hospital to be monitored closely by health practitioners. The hospital is also well-equipped to monitor the status of the fetus.


A Cesarean section may be performed if all the treatment options have been exhausted to no avail. The operation is also done if the safety of the mother and the body is at stake.

Complications of Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH)

  • It can lead to kidney damage and may also affect other organs.
  • PIH reduces the blood supply to the placenta, putting your child at risk for not getting the proper oxygenation and nutrition it needs to grow.
  • It also causes low birth weight.
  • The condition also puts you at risk for possible heart conditions and hypertension when you get older.
  • In severe cases, PIH can also lead to preeclampsia, which can harm your brain, liver and other organs. Preeclampsia can also lead to eclampsia, a more severe condition, causing seizures and coma.

Pregnancy-Induced Hypertension may seem like a scary condition, but being aware of its causes, treatments and complications, takes the fear away. With proper monitoring and adherence to diet and lifestyle modifications, PIH can be controlled and can even make you deliver the baby normally.


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