Neurological disorders complicating pregnancy - Focus on obstetric outcome

Sandya Renukesh, Lavanya Rai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Neurological disorders in pregnancy can be pregnancy related or can be caused by exacerbation of a preexisting neurological condition or sometimes may even be detected for the first time during pregnancy in which it might be an incidental finding. The diagnosis and management of the neurological disorders in pregnancy is always a challenging task due to varied symptomatology and risks to the fetus. The evaluation and management should be performed in a stepwise fashion and requires multidisciplinary approach. Aim: The present study was conducted with the aim to study the influence of neurological disorders on outcome of pregnancy. Material and Methods: This was a prospective observational study conduted over a period of 1 year (2013-2014) including 54 pregnant women with neurological manifestations. The spectrum of neurological manifestations was divided into-pregnancy specific,incidental and pre-existing neurological disorders for analysis. Five unusual cases with varied manifestations were studied in detail. Any pregnant woman presenting with neurological manifestation,irrespective of gestational age were included in the present study. The neurological manifestation and the obstetric outcome were analysed in the present study. Results: There were 54 women with varied neurological manifestations,majority (74%) of them being primigravida. Seizure was the most common (63%) manifestation. The incidence of pregnancy specific disorder (eclampsia),preexisting disease (epilepsy) and incidental causes were 40.8%,37% and 22.2% respectively. Of the 22 women with eclampsia,15(68%) had seizure during antepartum period and 7(32%) in the postpartum period. Three patients out of 22 who had eclampsia had intrauterine fetal demise on arrival itself,whereas the perinatal outcome was good in the other 19 patients who had live born babies. The most common incidental cause in the present study was tubercular meningitis (44%). There was however a maternal and perinatal mortality in woman with structural malformation who had massive intra-ventricular haemorrhage,secondary to ruptured cerebral cavernoma. Here we have described in detail 5 patients with varied clinical manifestation causing diagnostic dilemma. They are spinal arterio-venous malformation,disseminated toxoplasmosis,massive intra-ventricular haemorrhage (ruptured cerebral cavernoma),tubercular meningitis with cortical venous thrombosis,suspected Bartter syndrome presenting as coma. Conclusion: Neurological manifestation during pregnancy may not always be a primary neurological disorder,instead may be manifestation secondary to any systemic illness. Hence,a wide index of suspicion and neuroimaging aids in arriving at the diagnosis certainly improves the pregnancy outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-9
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 01-12-2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Biochemistry


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