Maternal and fetal outcome of pregnancy complicated by HELLP syndrome

Turki Gasem, Fathia E Al Jama, Sameera Burshaid, Jessica Rahman, Suleiman A Al Suleiman, Mohammad S Rahman
Journal of Maternal-fetal & Neonatal Medicine 2009, 22 (12): 1140-3

OBJECTIVE: The study evaluated the maternal and fetal outcome in 64 pregnancies complicated by HELLP syndrome.

METHODS: A retrospective analysis of the medical records was performed of patients with HELLP syndrome managed at this tertiary Obstetric unit between January 1996 and December 2005, who were admitted for preeclamsia/eclampsia and had documented evidence of hemolysis, elevated liver enzymes and low platelet count. Maternal and neonatal complications were recorded and analyzed.

RESULTS: The incidence of HELLP syndrome in the study was 8.3%. Mean gestational age at delivery was 32.4 +/- 4.2 weeks and mean birth weight was 1851 +/- 810 g. Forty-two percent of the patients had deliveries <32 weeks and 28% IUGR. Respiratory distress syndrome was the main indication for NICU admissions (33.9%). The PNM rate was 20%. Maternal morbidity rate was 34%. The most common maternal complications were abruptio placentae (36.4%) and DIC (31.8%). There was no maternal death.

CONCLUSION: Once the diagnosis of HELLP syndrome is confirmed, the management depends on several obstetric and maternal variables like gestational age, severity of laboratory abnormalities and fetal status. As soon as the maternal condition is stabilized and fetal assessment is obtained, prompt delivery of the fetus is indicated. It is not yet established whether expectant management in preterm pregnancies with HELLP syndrome would improve perinatal outcome.

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