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The winter worry,,

Scientists from Norway looked at 4.7 lakh births between 1977 and 1998 for pre-eclampsia, a problem due to increased blood pressure which is dangerous to the baby and the mother.They found that mothers of children born in August had the lowest risk of pre-eclampsia.

However the research team from the National Institute of Public Health in Oslo say there are wide range //of possible explanations for the seasonal fluctuation. In Ghana, more cases of eclampsia - the more advanced and potentially dangerous form of the disease - happen in the rainy season.

Pre-eclampsia is caused by a defect in the placenta, which joins mother and baby and supplies the baby with nutrients and oxygen .It often starts in the latter stages of pregnancy.It is usually symptomless,however warning signs can be picked up through routine ante-natal checks.

In its more advanced stages, mothers may experience severe headaches, vomiting and vision problems. It is treatable, often with a combination of drugs and bed-rest, although if it cannot be controlled, the baby may have to be delivered prematurely.


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