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Specific treatment for gestational hypertension will be determined by your doctor based on:
Your pregnancy, overall health, and medical history
Extent of the disease
Your tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies
Expectations for the course of the disease
Your opinion or preference
The goal of treatment is to prevent the condition from becoming worse and to prevent it from causing other complications. Treatment for gestational hypertension may include:
Bedrest, either at home or in the hospital, may be recommended
Hospitalization (as specialized personnel and equipment may be necessary)
Magnesium sulfate (or other antihypertensive medications for gestational hypertension)
Fetal monitoring (to check the health of the fetus) which may include:
Fetal movement counting. Keeping track of fetal kicks and movements. A change in the number or frequency may mean the fetus is under stress.
Nonstress testing. A test that measures the fetal heart rate in response to the fetus's movements.
Biophysical profile. A test that combines nonstress test with ultrasound to observe the fetus.
Doppler flow studies. A type of ultrasound that uses sound waves to measure the flow of blood through a blood vessel.
Continued laboratory testing of urine and blood (for changes that may signal worsening of gestational hypertension)
Medications, called corticosteroids, that may help to mature the lungs of the fetus (lung immaturity is a major problem of premature babies)
Delivery of the baby (if treatments do not control gestational hypertension or if the fetus or mother is in danger). Cesarean delivery may be recommended, in some cases.
Prevention of gestational hypertension
Early identification of women at risk for gestational hypertension may help prevent some complications of the disease. Education about the warning symptoms is also important because early recognition may help women receive treatment and prevent worsening of the disease.