What is gestational hypertension?

Updated: Jun 12, 2018
  • Author: Michael P Carson, MD; Chief Editor: Edward H Springel, MD, FACOG  more...
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Gestational hypertension refers to hypertension with onset in the latter part of pregnancy (>20 weeks' gestation) without any other features of preeclampsia, and followed by normalization of the blood pressure postpartum. Of women who initially present with apparent gestational hypertension, about one third develops the syndrome of preeclampsia. As such, these patients should be observed carefully for this progression. The pathophysiology of gestational hypertension is unknown, but in the absence of features of preeclampsia, the maternal and fetal outcomes are usually normal. Gestational hypertension may, however, be a harbinger of chronic hypertension later in life.

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