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Late-Onset Postpartum Eclampsia


  • Ijeoma Azonobi MD,

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    • Ijeoma Azonobi, MD, received her medical degree from Morehouse School of Medicine in May 2005. She has begun a residency program in obstetrics and gynecology.

  • Helen McBride-Richter CNM, MSN,

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    • Helen McBride-Richter, CNM, MSN, is currently in private practice.

  • Loretta Patrick RN, Esq

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    • Loretta Patrick, RN, JD, received her nursing degree from Purdue University and her law degree from Georgia State University College of Law.

Ijeoma Azonobi, MD, Duke University Medical Center, Department of OB/GYN, Box 3616 Med Cr, Durham, NC 27710. E-mail:


Eclampsia typically occurs in the antepartum or intrapartum period. Late-onset postpartum eclampsia is a controversial topic, which recently has been accepted as a true phenomenon. Late-onset postpartum eclampsia is a rare occurrence, although literature suggests that it is an increasing phenomenon. In this case study, an essentially healthy primigravida developed eclampsia 7 days postpartum after an unremarkable antepartum and intrapartum course. Because significant morbidity and mortality are associated with this disorder, it is imperative that efforts be made to prevent its occurrence. We recommend including patient education about the prodromal symptoms of late-onset postpartum eclampsia, including headache, visual changes, and abdominal pain at the time of hospital discharge.