Pre-eclampsia is a disease of pregnancy affecting 5-10% of all pregnancies, usually after 20 weeks. Pre-eclampsia is not preventable and cannot be cured, only carefully managed. The progress of the disease is only stopped when the baby is delivered which sometimes has to be done very early in the pregnancy to save the life of the mother. Sadly this can result in the death of the baby.
Action on Pre-eclampsia was set up in 1991 by Isabel Walker and Professor Chris Redman. Isabel lost her first baby as a result of pre-eclampsia and was surprised to find out that there was no information and support for women who had suffered like her. As a medical journalist, Isabel sought out Chris Redman, an expert on pre-eclampsia, and between them they wrote "Pre-eclampsia - the Facts". Action on Pre-eclampsia was then formed in order to raise public and professional awareness, improve care, and ease or prevent physical and emotional suffering caused by the disease.
Pre-eclampsia continues to be the most common of the serious complications of pregnancy and affects thousands of women in the UK each year. Worldwide the figures are stark. It is estimated that 4,000,000 have pre-eclampsia every year. 100,000 of these go on to have eclamptic fits. Every 6 minutes a woman dies as a result of pre-eclampsia.
At APEC we aim to raise awareness of pre-eclampsia amongst pregnant women and health professionals. We run training days for midwives so they can learn more about dealing with pre-eclampsia from the top experts in the UK. We run a helpline service for those suffering from pre-eclampsia or people who would like more information (call 0208 427 4217 or email firstname.lastname@example.org). We also offer an expert referral service so those worried about pre-eclampsia can be referred to a local expert via their GP.