- Hemolysis, Elevated Liver Enzymes, Lowered Platelets
Your QuestionMy mother had HELLP syndrome. Is this condition genetic? Am I at high risk of getting HELLP syndrome when I get pregnant?
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Doctors are still unclear on what exactly causes HELLP syndrome. Although it is more common in women who have preeclampsia or pregnancy induced hypertension (high blood pressure), there are still a number of women who get it without previously showing signs of preeclampsia.
The following is a list of factors that are believed to increase the risk of a woman developing HELLP syndrome:
- Previous pregnancy with HELLP Syndrome (19-27% chance of recurrence in each pregnancy)
- Preeclampsia or pregnancy induced hypertension
- Women over the age of 25
- Being caucasian
- Multiparous (given birth two or more times)
The following online resources can help you find a genetics professional in your community:
- The National Society of Genetic Counselors provides a database of genetics counseling services, searchable by location, name, institution, type of practice, or specialty.
- The University of Kansas Medical Center provides a list of links to genetic centers and clinics, associations, and university genetics departments.
- The American College of Medical Genetics has a Genetics Clinics Database for individuals who wish to locate a U.S. genetics center.
- The American Society of Human Genetics is a professional organization of researchers and clinical geneticists. The ASHG maintains a database of its members, some of whom live outside of the United States. Visit the ASHG site if you are interested in obtaining a list of the geneticists in your country, though some may be researchers only and may not offer medical care.
- HELLP Syndrome. FamilyDoctor.org. April 2004; http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/hellp-syndrome.printerview.all.html. Accessed 9/19/2014.
- Storck S. HELLP syndrome. MedlinePlus. November 8, 2012; http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000890.htm. Accessed 9/18/2014.
- HELLP Syndrome. American Pregnancy Association. 2009; http://www.americanpregnancy.org/pregnancycomplications/hellpsyndrome.html. Accessed 1/27/2010.
- Oudejans CB, van Dijk M. Placenta. 2008; http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17959244.
- Preeclampsia/Eclampsia. Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM). 2009; http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/dispomim.cgi?id=189800. Accessed 1/27/2010.