Initially, Pre-Eclampsia causes high blood pressure (hypertension) and protein in urine (proteinuria).
Although you will not usually notice the early signs of Pre-Eclampsia, the condition can easily be diagnosed during the routine checks you have while you're pregnant.
During these antenatal appointments, your blood pressure is regularly checked for signs of high blood pressure and a urine sample is tested to see if it contains protein.
High blood pressure affects 10-15% of all pregnant women, so this alone does not suggest Pre-Eclampsia. However, if protein in the urine is found at the same time as high blood pressure, it is a good indicator of the condition.
As Pre-Eclampsia develops, it can cause fluid retention (oedema), which often leads to the sudden swelling of the feet, ankles, face and hands.