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Preeclampsia: Low-Dose Aspirin to the Rescue

Preeclampsia: Low-Dose Aspirin to the Rescue

More women need to know that low-dose aspirin can help to offset preeclampsia in pregnancy.

Not enough pregnant women know that low-dose aspirin can help to head off preeclampsia. The condition — life-threatening high blood pressure — is a factor in up to one in 20 pregnancies in the United States.

Preeclampsia: Low-Dose Aspirin to the Rescue

Both the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine support the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force recommendation regarding low-dose aspirin. Ten years ago, the task force recommended women at risk for preeclampsia start taking baby aspirin when they are 12 weeks pregnant. But many at-risk pregnant women still aren’t getting the news.
“Baby aspirin has been out there for a while, but a lot of patients don’t know about it and a lot of providers aren’t screening appropriately,” says Dr. Elizabeth Cherot, president of the March of Dimes. “It’s over-the-counter, it’s available, it’s accessible. But there seem to be barriers preventing high-risk patients from taking it as a preventive measure,” she adds.
To counter the barriers, The March of Dimes is starting a campaign, “Low Dose, Big Benefits,” to raise awareness among health providers and pregnant woman.
Preeclampsia causes dangerously high blood pressure before, during or after giving birth. Those at risk for developing preeclampsia include anyone who had it during a previous pregnancy, as well as those carrying multiples, those with kidney or autoimmune disease, Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, or those with chronic hypertension. Additionally, a pregnant woman may be at risk if her first pregnancy is at age 35 or older, if she has a body mass index greater than 30 or a family history of preeclampsia.
The March of Dimes campaign aims to make the important news mainstream once and for all.
“This project is about getting the message out there for families and pregnant people as well as health care personnel,” Dr. Cherot said. “Patients should be asking their providers about low-dose aspirin.”
If you are expecting or plan to be and are in a high-risk category, ask your doctor about taking baby aspirin while pregnant.

 

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Susan Swindell Day

Susan Day is the editor in chief for this award-winning publication and all-things Nashville Parent digital creative. She's also an Equity actress, screenwriter and a mom of four amazing kids.