Pre-eclampsia is sometimes called pregnancy-induced hypertension and toxaemia.
Many people do not notice any symptoms of the condition. It is the midwife who detects it during a check-up.
When and where should I seek medical care?
When you are pregnant, you will visit the midwifery clinic (barnmorskemottagningen) several times.
If you develop pre-eclampsia, you will need to come in for extra check-ups.
If you need urgent care
People who develop the condition usually have it towards the end of their pregnancy – usually during the last six weeks. But it can develop earlier than this.
You may need medical attention more urgently if any of the following apply:
- You suddenly get a headache that does not feel normal.
- You have problems with your eyesight.
- You have a lot of pain in the upper part of your stomach, especially on the right side under your ribs.
- You feel nauseated and vomit during the second half of your pregnancy.
- Your face, hands or feet swell up. The swelling comes on suddenly.
- You feel generally unwell.
Contact one of these clinics:
- A midwifery clinic.
- An out-of-hours service.
If it is closed or they cannot attend to you, seek care from one of these clinics:
- An emergency department if the condition occurs during the first half of your pregnancy.
- A maternity ward if the condition occurs during the second half of your pregnancy.
Call 1177 for advice
Call the 1177 helpline if you need advice on what to do.
Your call will be answered by a nurse. The nurse can speak both Swedish and English.
Help is sometimes available in other languages.
Call +46 771 11 77 00 if you are calling from a phone with a foreign number.
If you have pre-eclampsia, it is important to rest and take it easy.
A midwife will measure your blood pressure when you visit the midwifery clinic.
You will be asked to provide a urine sample.
You may also be examined by ultrasound. This examination can show images of the baby in your womb.
You may also be examined using a device that measures your baby’s heart rate. This is called a CTG.
You can get help from an interpreter
You can get help from an interpreter if you do not speak Swedish.
Let the clinic know you need an interpreter when you book your appointment.
Some people may be given a medicine called blood thinner early in the pregnancy. This may be done, for example, if you had pre-eclampsia in a previous pregnancy. The medicine may prevent you from developing the condition again.
If you have developed pre-eclampsia, you may be given medicine to lower your blood pressure.
Some people are hospitalised. This makes it easier for healthcare workers to monitor your blood pressure and how you are feeling.
If rest and treatment are not sufficient, the baby may need to be delivered early.
After the baby is born
Pre-eclampsia will go away after the baby is born.
Some people need to take medicines for a few months after giving birth.
You may be more likely to develop certain diseases later in life.
For example, you may be more likely to develop diseases of the heart and blood vessels, called cardiovascular diseases.
That is why it is a good idea to maintain a healthy lifestyle, as then you are less likely to get sick.