(ORDO NEWS) — Lauren Phillips, a 32-year-old lawyer from Brooklyn, had an easy pregnancy.
Her performance remained perfect, she felt great on a vegan diet and was able to walk three kilometers a day for the duration.
The only catch was that, despite having been vaccinated three times and carefully masked, she contracted the coronavirus in her second trimester.
It didn’t seem like much of a problem at the time – “just like a mild cold” – and her pregnancy was uneventful until she gave birth to a healthy baby boy in April. The problems started a few days later.
She was at home breastfeeding her son when she felt what she said was a “pulse” shaking her body, and by the time she got to the emergency room, her blood pressure had shot up to a dangerous level of 160/116.
Phillips didn’t know it at the time, but she had preeclampsia, a little-understood pregnancy complication that kills more than 70,000 mothers and 500,000 fetuses worldwide every year.
For years, the incidence of the disease in the United States has been steadily rising, but during the pandemic, doctors say the number of cases has skyrocketed. Nobody knows exactly why.
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