By Chinyere Amalu
FEDERAL government has been urged to adoptÂ more effective treatment programmes to preserve womenâ€™s lives and stop preventable deaths in the country. Country Director, Population Council Dr Andrew Karlyn said eclampsia, a major cause of maternal death in Nigeria, often leads to seizures, coma and death in pregnant women and also the deaths of babies during or after childbirth.
He made this assertion at the dissemination meeting held for the Magnesium Sulphate treatment/Maternal Mortality Reduction project held in Kano recently.
He explained that eclampsia is a condition pregnant women can get with common symptoms including high blood pressure, accompanied with a high level of protein in the urine.
Karlyn described the countryâ€™s infant-maternal rates as highly unacceptable and warned that â€œgovernment must take drastic steps to reduce deaths among mothers and children if the country is to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and theÂ Seven Point Agenda of the Yarâ€™dua administration.â€
He disclosed that a pilot project carried out in 10 secondary level hospitals in Kano by his organisation in conjunction with the Kano State Health Management Board showed that the Magnesium Sulphate treatment reduced maternal deaths by 40 per cent.
â€œThisÂ saves the lives of women brought in with eclampsia. It is time to for government to include this method for treatment in its interventions to reduce the countryâ€™s high infant and maternal deaths.â€