Hyperemesis gravidarum complicated by Wernicke's encephalopathy.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: Wernicke's encephalopathy is usually associated with alcohol abuse, but can also occur with hyperemesis gravidarum. The effect of delay in thiamine replacement on fetal outcomes is unknown. We present a case of this complication. CASE: A primipara with hyperemesis was admitted for mental status changes in her 14th week of pregnancy. Physical examination revealed a lethargic patient with ophthalmoplegia, ataxia, and hyporeflexia. Parenteral thiamine therapy was started. The patient improved rapidly although the ataxia persisted. A spontaneous abortion occurred 2 weeks later. CONCLUSION: Wernicke's encephalopathy can complicate hyperemesis gravidarum. Early thiamine replacement may decrease the chances of spontaneous abortion.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Spruill, SC; Kuller, JA

Published Date

  • May 2002

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 99 / 5 Pt 2

Start / End Page

  • 875 - 877

PubMed ID

  • 11975941

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0029-7844

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/s0029-7844(01)01603-9


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States