The effect of magnesium sulfate on large cerebral artery blood flow in preeclampsia

Mustapha R. Hatab, Gerda G. Zeeman, Diane M. Twickler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Objectives. To determine the effect of a 6 gram intravenous bolus of magnesium sulfate on maternal cerebral blood flow in women with preeclampsia. Study Design. Velocity-encoded phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging studies were performed on twelve preeclamptic women prior to and immediately after infusion of a 6 gram magnesium sulfate loading dose. Cerebral blood flow was determined at the bilateral proximal middle and posterior cerebral arteries. Study participants returned 6 weeks postpartum for a non-pregnant measurement of cerebral blood flow. The Wilcoxon paired-sample test was used with statistical significance defined as p < 0.05. Results. There was no significant difference in cerebral vessel diameter nor blood flow for any of the examined arteries between the pre- and post magnesium sulfate therapy states. Conclusions. The absence of a significant difference in cerebral blood flow of the middle and posterior cerebral arteries before and after infusion of a 6 gram loading dose of magnesium sulfate in women with preeclampsia could suggest the absence of vasoconstriction of the large cerebral arteries in preeclampsia and question the role of magnesium sulfate as a vasodilator of these arteries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-192
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2005


  • Cerebral blood flow
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Preeclampsia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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