Head computed tomographic scans in women with eclampsia

C. E L Brown, P. Purdy, F. G. Cunningham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


From 1980 to 1986, head computed tomographic scans were performed in 49 women with eclampsia managed according to the standardized regimen used at Parkland Memorial Hospital. Abnormal radiographic findings were seen in 14 (29%). Although this incidence may have been affected by the temporal relationship of the scan to the seizure, it was greatly impacted by technical resolution obtained with succeeding improved equipment. In the last 3 years of the study more than a third of these scans showed some abnormality, and in 1986, using “fourth-generation” equipment, half were abnormal. These areas of radiographic hypodensity correspond to those with petechial hemorrhages and local edema that have been described at autopsy in women who died after eclamptic episodes. All women recovered fully despite ominous findings in some. We conclude that the clinical utility of tomography in women with otherwise “uncomplicated eclampsia” is limited because these findings seldom alter management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)915-920
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics and gynecology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1988


  • Computed tomography
  • eclampsia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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