Pre-eclampsia second leading cause of maternal mortality in Uganda

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Pre-eclampsia second leading cause of maternal mortality in Uganda
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In revelation by the ministry of health, pre-eclampsia has surged to become the second leading cause of maternal mortality in Uganda, responsible for a staggering 13 percent of maternal deaths.

This condition not only poses a significant threat to maternal health but also increases the risk of preterm birth, adding to the complexity of maternal care.

Dr Emmanuel Byaruhanga, the executive director of Kawempe National Referral Hospital, said pre-eclampsia is a silent but deadly condition that requires urgent attention.

"Its impact on maternal mortality cannot be overstated, and we must prioritize efforts to address it," he said.

Echoing Dr Byaruhanga's concerns, Dr Diana Atwine, permanent secretary at the Ministry of Health, underscored the global significance of pre-eclampsia.

"Globally, pre-eclampsia accounts for 16 percent of all maternal deaths during pregnancy or childbirth, translating to over 76,000 deaths annually," she said.

"Its repercussions extend beyond maternal health, contributing to over 500,000 newborn deaths per year."

Pre-eclampsia manifests in various ways, including convulsions, stroke, kidney failure, bleeding complications, fluid retention in the lungs, liver failure, and disruptions in the clotting system, all of which can lead to maternal death if not promptly addressed.

Dr Byaruhanga also highlighted the long-term health implications for women who have experienced pre-eclampsia.

"Beyond the immediate risks, survivors of pre-eclampsia face increased susceptibility to chronic hypertension, kidney disease, cardiovascular disorders, and diabetes mellitus," he said.

"The impact extends far beyond pregnancy, necessitating comprehensive follow-up care."

Experts highlight that to combat pre-eclampsia, it require a multifaceted approach, including improved antenatal care, access to essential medications, enhanced monitoring protocols, and increased awareness among healthcare providers and the general population.

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