Increased cardiovascular risk among pre-eclamptic women within a decade


eMediNexus    29 January 2023

Findings from a study reported in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, stated that pre-eclamptic women had a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes for a considerable long time after giving birth.


Within 20 years of giving birth, women with a history of pre-eclampsia had a greater cumulative incidence of acute myocardial infarction (MI) and ischemic stroke (more than 2%) than did women without such a history.


The research stated, pre-eclamptic women continued to have a significantly increased risk of acute MI (HR 4.16, 95% CI 3.16-5.49) and stroke (HR 2.59, 95% CI 2.04-3.28) even after ten years with more risks after the age of 20.


The current study included over 1 million pregnant women without a history of cardiovascular illness who were pregnant between 1978 and 2017. It was observed that over a median follow-up period of 20.5 years, 3.8% of women experienced an ischemic stroke, and 2.5% of women experienced an acute MI as their first ischemic event. Its possible that some women who experienced acute MIs or strokes within the first decade after giving birth had clinically undiagnosed CVD beforehand. Regardless of the reason, pre-eclampsia patients had considerably increased chances of developing ischemia endpoints in the decades immediately following delivery and at a young age.


Researchers cited studies examining whether targeted therapies started soon after pregnancy with pre-eclampsia reduce arterial stiffness and BP change. They concluded that the next step would be to ascertain if reducing CVD risk factors by such focused therapies results in a decrease in unfavorable cardiovascular outcomes for women who have experienced pre-eclampsia.


(Source: https://www.medpagetoday.com/obgyn/pregnancy/102833)

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