12 on Health: Preeclampsia

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THE BRONX -

A Bronx mother is just one of thousands of women who are diagnosed each year with preeclampsia.

It's a condition that affects some women within the first 20 weeks of pregnancy and causes high blood pressure and possible organ damage.

Rubi Garrido was pregnant with her daughter, and she thought she was having an asthma attack, but learned it was preeclampsia.

The symptoms can seem similar to an asthma attack with shortness of breath, but blood work revealed the startling truth.

Rubi's daughter was born prematurely at 27 weeks and also has chronic lung disease.

Doctors say getting prenatal care is especially important to detect, and then decide how best to treat preeclampsia.

Doctors say 10 percent of women develop preeclampsia.

Rubi says you have to be your own best advocate.

"Always be on top of your blood work. Be healthy and ask your doctors questions,” she says.

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