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Pregnancy Headache Could be Cause for Concern In Certain Cases


A new study suggests that headaches during pregnancy may be a cause of concern under certain circumstances, Fox News reports.

The research was published in the journal Neurology and is the largest study of its kind. The researchers belong to the Montefiore Health System and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Yeshiva University.

The study suggests that a rapidly intensifying headache in a pregnant woman may be a cause of concern if she has high blood pressure and no history of headache.

According to Fox News, Lead author Dr. Matthew S. Robbins, director of inpatient services at Montefiore Headache Center, chief of neurology at Jack D. Weiler Hospital of Montefiore, and associate professor of clinical neurology at Einstein, said in a news release,

"Our study suggests that physicians should pay close attention when a pregnant woman presents with a severe headache, especially if she has elevated blood pressure or lack of past headache history."

"Those patients should be referred immediately for neuroimaging and monitoring for preeclampsia."

Symptoms of preeclampsia include high blood pressure, headaches, blurry vision or abdominal pain. The only cure for pregnant mothers who are diagnosed with preeclampsia is delivering their babies.

For the study, the researchers selected 140 women whose average age was 29 after studying the medical records of every pregnant woman who reported a headache and had been referred for a neurological consultation at Weiler Hospital over a five-year period.

The researchers observed that women with headache and high blood pressure were 17 times as likely to have a headache caused by a different condition.  

"In most of these patients, their elevated blood pressure was driven by preeclampsia," Robbins said in the news release, according to Fox News.

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