Women suffering from epilepsy, a brain disorder which causes the onset of periodic seizures, often face extreme difficulty managing the treatment of their condition while pregnant. Research has proven that seizures during pregnancy harm both mother and child, as do the medications often prescribed to treat and prevent the condition.
In order to fully assess the range of risk to epileptic mothers and their babies, scientists from the University of Bergen in Norway authored a study comparing medical records covering the pregnancies of approximately 200 women with epilepsy to those of the same number of women who did not have the condition. They also assessed the differences between epileptic women who were managing their disorder using seizure medications while pregnant and those who were not.
Overall, the study showed that epileptic women were more than twice as likely to experience preeclampsia and were at higher risk for issues such as, vaginal bleeding early in pregnancy, premature birth and having a baby with malformations.
Additionally, the study revealed that women who took seizure medications as a means to control their epilepsy during pregnancy were more than twice as likely to have labor induced and emergency Cesarean sections compared to epileptic women who were not taking medication.
Women with epilepsy need to take great care when managing their condition while pregnant. Physicians also need to pay close attention to epileptic patients when addressing proper care for both mother and baby.