THURSDAY, Nov. 12, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The rates of prepregnancy hypertension per 1,000 live births increased considerably between 2007 and 2018, according to a study presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2020, held virtually from Nov. 13 to 17.
Natalie A. Cameron, M.D., from Northwestern University in Chicago, and colleagues performed a nationwide study using maternal data from all live births to women aged 15 to 44 years between 2007 and 2018 to describe trends in maternal prepregnancy hypertension.
The researchers found that between 2007 and 2018, the rates of prepregnancy hypertension per 1,000 live births increased for rural (13.7 to 23.7) and urban (10.5 to 20.0) women among 47,949,381 live births. There were two significant inflection points, identified in 2010 and 2016, with the greatest annual percentage change in the most recent period in rural and urban areas (9.6 and 9.0 percent/year, respectively). In both rural and urban areas, absolute rates were lower in younger (8.6 and 7.2, respectively, in 15- to 19-year-olds) versus older women (69.4 and 45.9, respectively, in 40- to 44-year-olds), but similar increases were seen in all age groups between 2007 and 2018. Compared with urban women, the likelihood of prepregnancy hypertension in rural women varied from 1.19 to 1.55 for 15- to 19-year-olds and 40- to 44-year-olds, respectively, in 2018.
"These data demonstrate unacceptable increases in the number of women with hypertension that need to be addressed urgently," Cameron said in a statement. "Preventive care must start before pregnancy."