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September 1989

Magnesium Sulfate and Eclampsia

Author Affiliations

Department of Neurology University of Connecticut School of Medicine Farmington, CT 06032

Arch Neurol. 1989;46(9):945-946. doi:10.1001/archneur.1989.00520450015005

To the Editor.  —As a neurologist who, throughout his career, has written and lectured about the use of magnesium sulfate for eclamptic convulsions, I have voted early and often against the use of magnesium sulfate.1-4 What I have learned is that no one likes to hear that what has been considered to be gospel for 60 years should go the way of bloodletting,5 and the obstetricians control access to toxemic patients. American physicians should know that obstetricians in much of the world, including Scandinavia, the United Kingdom, and Australia, rarely use magnesium sulfate for eclampsia.6,7Neurology shares by inaction the blame for the continued use of magnesium sulfate in the United States. Obstetrical and neurological societies do not send representatives to one another. Descriptions of eclampsia in neurology textbooks went out with the turn of the century. How many neurologists have ever heard a discussion of the

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