Background: Preeclampsia is a pregnancy-specific disorder that is associated with an increase in blood pressure and proteinuria; in severe cases, it can cause platelet abnormalities. Silymarin is the extract of Silybum marianum, which is recognized as a safe antioxidant drug. 

Objective: To determine the impact of Silymarin on the improvement of severe preeclampsia in 60 patients with severe preeclampsia.

Methods: In this double-blind clinical trial study, This study included 60 patients whose pregnancies were terminated because of severe preeclampsia and who were referred to Hajar Hospital in Shahrekord, Iran, from April 2014 to September 2015. The patients were divided randomly into two groups, i.e., a group of 30 patients and a control group of 30 patients. In addition to the current treatments for preeclampsia, The members of the study group were administered 70 mg of Silymarin at three hours and 24 hours after the termination of their pregnancies. The control group received a placebo at the same times. Platelet count tests were compared at the baseline and at 12, 36, and 60 hours post-measurements in the two groups by SPSS software, version 22, by the ANOVA test, and by the independent-samples t-test.

Results: At the baseline, the two groups were not significantly different in terms of various criteria, such as age, BMI, and platelet counts. There were no significant differences between the two groups regarding the number of platelets at 12, 36, and 60 h after their pregnancies were ended (p > 0.01). 

Conclusions: The results of this study indicated that, although oxidative factors are involved in the incidence of complications of preeclampsia, e.g., thrombocytopenia, merely using an oxidative agent does not alleviate this effect. This indicated that other factors likely are involved in the pathogenesis of this disease. Additional studies are needed to prove the beneficial effects of this drug in the treatment of preeclampsia.

Clinical trial registration: The trial was registered at the Iranian Registry of Clinical Trials (http://www.irct.ir) with the Irct ID: IRCT201509042388/N1.

Funding: Shahrekord University of Medical Sciences supported this research (project no. 2006).


Keywords: Preeclampsia, Silymarin, Platelet count
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