In a nutshell
This study investigated the effects of ibuprofen and acetaminophen in the treatment of women with postpartum hypertension or preeclampsia. The study concluded that the use of ibuprofen did not increase the duration of severe-range hypertension in women with preeclampsia.
Some women may experience high blood pressure or preeclampsia during pregnancy. Managing hypertension (high blood pressure) during pregnancy is very important as it can lead to postpartum hypertension (following childbirth).
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can cause an increase in blood pressure in non-pregnant adults. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommend that pregnant women avoid using NSAIDs such as ibuprofen. There is little evidence to support this. Instead, acetaminophen is approved by the ACOG for pain relief in pregnant women.
Methods & findings
This study investigated the effects of ibuprofen compared to acetaminophen on blood pressure (BP) in postpartum women with preeclampsia.
This study included 93 women that were diagnosed with preeclampsia during pregnancy. Patients were randomly assigned to receive a dose of ibuprofen (600 mg) or acetaminophen (650 mg) every 6 hours beginning 6 hours after delivery. Treatment continued until the patients were discharged from hospital.
Severe-range hypertension (blood pressure greater than 160/110 mmHg) was not significantly longer in patients that took ibuprofen versus acetaminophen (35.3 versus 38 hours). There was no difference between the groups in several other measures including postpartum mean arterial BP and maximum postpartum blood pressures.
The bottom line
They concluded that the use of ibuprofen did not increase the duration of severe-range hypertension in women with preeclampsia.
The fine print
This was a relatively small study and larger studies are needed. There was a high proportion of patients of Native American and Hispanic ethnicity and a low representation of African American patients in this study. The findings may not be applicable to all ethnicities.
If you have any concerns regarding blood pressure management and medication during or after pregnancy, please consult with your obstetrician.
Published By :
American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Mar 02, 2018