What is the role of magnesium sulfate in the treatment of eclampsia?

Updated: Apr 18, 2019
  • Author: Michael G Ross, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Ronald M Ramus, MD  more...
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Answer

Answer

Several organizations have developed screening, treatment, and prevention guidelines for preeclampsia and eclampsia. [17, 18, 19]  The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM) continue to support the short-term (usually 19</ref>:

  • For prevention and treatment of seizures in women with preeclampsia or eclampsia
    • Recent recommendations suggest that magnesium sulfate be utilized for seizure prophylaxis in severe preeclampsia and for controlling seizures in eclampsia, though magnesium sulfate is not required for preeclampsia without severe features
  • For fetal neuroprotection before anticipated early preterm (<32 weeks of gestation) delivery
  • For short-term prolongation of pregnancy (≤48 hours) to allow for the administration of antenatal corticosteroids in pregnant women who are at risk of preterm delivery within 7 days

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