Pre-eclampsia and Eclampsia

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Ten percent of all pregnancies are complicated by hypertension. Eclampsia and pre-eclampsia account for about half of these cases worldwide, and these conditions have been recognized and described for years despite the general lack of understanding of the disease. In the fifth century, Hippocrates noted that headaches, convulsions, and drowsiness were ominous signs associated with pregnancy. In 1619, Varandaeus coined the term eclampsia in a treatise on gynaecology.