SAPS (Salt and Pregnancy Study)

Principle Investigator:
Hayley Tarft

About one woman in 50 in the UK develops high blood pressure and problems with her kidneys during pregnancy. This combination is known as pre-eclampsia (or sometimes as “toxaemia” or “PET”) and usually settles down spontaneously after the baby is born. Babies born after pre-eclampsia are on average smaller than other babies, and may have had to be delivered early (before 37 completed weeks of pregnancy). The causes of pre-eclampsia are unknown, but the placenta (afterbirth) is almost certainly involved. Babies can also be born small and early when the mother has not had pre-eclampsia, and again, the placenta and womb (uterus) seem to be involved. A baby’s life before birth may be linked to their risk of disease in later life, but how this might happen is also unknown. The aims of the study are to take blood and urine samples from you before delivery, then the placenta and blood from the umbilical cord after your baby has been delivered, to let us make measurements of a variety of hormones and enzymes which might affect how the placenta works.

BPiPP (Blood Pressure in Postnatal Period)

Principle Investigator:
Hayley Tarft

We want to understand if women with high blood pressure in pregnancy, or immediately after, have different health problems and healthcare needs after birth, compared with women who did not have high blood pressure in pregnancy. High blood pressure is a common complication in pregnancy. Sometimes high blood pressure in pregnancy results in the baby needing to be delivered early. It can also cause complications for the mother, including damage to the heart and kidneys and more rarely, a stroke. There is evidence to suggest that the number of women with high blood pressure in pregnancy are increasing. We are trying to understand what, if any, additional needs women might need to better support them after birth.

GEM3 (Combination of Gefitinib and Methotrexate to treat Ectopic Pregnancy)

Principle Investigator:
Ngozi Izuwah-Njoku

An ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fertilised egg attaches itself somewhere other than inside the womb, usually in the Fallopian tube. Sadly there is no chance of this pregnancy surviving and if it is allowed to continue it could potentially be life threatening. If the ectopic pregnancy is detected early enough it can be treated with a single dose of methotrexate which stops the pregnancy developing. In some cases this single dose of methotrexate is not successful and a further dose of methotrexate is required or surgery may be needed. A more effective treatment is needed to reduce the need for repeat doses of methotrexate or surgery. Previous studies using a drug called gefitinib in addition to methotrexate have shown promising results. Gefitinib is a drug used in lung cancer patients. It has been shown to have a blocking effect on the cells found in an ectopic pregnancy. These studies were in a small number of women and we now need a larger group of women to prove that this treatment reduces the need for repeat doses of methotrexate or the need for surgery. The combination of methotrexate and gefitinib has been found to be safe and to have no serious side effects.