Eight patients having severe pregnancy induced hypertension complicated by thrombocytopenia and elevated liver function tests are described. The patients were treated with nifedipine. In addition to controlling blood pressure, nifedipine appeared to reverse thrombocytopenia; mean platelet count rose from 90 × 109/l to 159 × 109/l (P < 0·05). Serum transaminases became normal. Mean lactate dehydrogenase decreased from 417 to 274 (P < 0·05). The significance of HELLP syndrome is discussed.