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Mediators Inflamm. 2010;2010:908649. doi: 10.1155/2010/908649. Epub 2010 Dec 28.

Maternal serum levels of TNF-alpha and IL-6 long after delivery in preeclamptic and normotensive pregnant women.

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2nd Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Aretaieio Hospital, University of Athens, Athens, Greece.



To evaluate maternal TNF-alpha and IL-6 plasma levels in normotensive pregnant women, women with preeclampsia, and to examine the temporal changes in their levels from the antepartum to the postpartum period correlated with the regression of preeclampsia.


A prospective study was performed in the 2nd Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Athens. Blood samples were obtained: (1) antepartum at the time of clinical diagnosis of the syndrome, 2. 12-14 weeks postpartum.


No statistically significant differences were found in IL-6 levels, whereas a difference was found in TNF-alpha levels between preeclamptic and controls in antepartum period (0.80 pg/ml versus 0.60 pg/ml, P : .04). Long after delivery, TNF-alpha levels were significantly higher in preeclamptic compared to normotensive controls (0.86 pg/ml versus 0.60 pg/ml, P : .004). No difference was observed in TNF-alpha before and after delivery in both groups. No difference was noticed in IL-6 levels in women of normotensive group long after delivery compared to that before delivery. Long after delivery IL-6 levels were statistically significant higher in preeclamptic women compared to normal controls (3.53 ± 0.52 pg/ml versus 1.69 ± 0.48 pg/ml, P : .02).


Preeclamptic women remain under a status of increased inflammatory stress up to 12-14 weeks postpartum despite the fact that all the other signs of preeclampsia are resolved.

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