Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Spit test spots deadly pre-eclampsia

LONDON, May 8 A home test which uses spit allows mothers-to-be to check for themselves whether they are at risk for pre-eclampsia, says a British study.

The test is expected to be more reliable than the traditional blood pressure and urine tests conducted in doctors' offices and hospitals, according to the study published in Chemistry & Industry.

Pre-eclampsia, which can cause infant mortality, also causes maternal mortality, killing one woman globally every six seconds, according to the United Kingdom's Action on Pre-Eclampsia. Earlier detection and intervention could save lives, but standard blood pressure and urine tests are unreliable, and there is a lot of room for "user error" , according to Michael Rich, head of Action on Pre-eclampsia. The test works by monitoring levels of urate, a salt of uric acid, increased levels of which are thought to be due to impaired kidney excretion in pre-eclampsia.

Copyright 2007 by UPI

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