Pre-eclampsia project wins second grant to research and prevent maternal deaths
November 14, 2012
Peter von Dadelszen, a professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and clinician-scientist at the Children & Family Research Institute (CFRI), is heading a pre-eclampsia study that recently received a $17 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This is the second grant the foundation has awarded von Dadelszen and his team to research better treatments for women with pre-eclampsia.
The potentially fatal condition is caused by high blood pressure during pregnancy. Every year, 76,000 women die from organ failure or bleeding after suffering from stroke, failure of the lungs or kidney and seizures (eclampsia). However, this condition can be managed if women are taken to hospitals and treated for high blood pressure until their babies can be delivered.
"Pre-eclampsia should be as survivable in Nigeria as it is in Canada, but the difference in outcomes is stark," Dr. von Dadelszen said in a press release about the grant. "We want to see if we can remedy this inequity through a combination of training, community education and a dose of technology."
This new project will expand the team's work into four developing countries, including India, Pakistan, Mozambique and Nigeria. Approximately 130,000 pregnant women will be assessed for risk and treated, medicated or transported to other healthcare facilities as necessary.
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