Pregnancy Complications Associated with Heart Disease

Patients have increased risk of coronary artery disease and cardiac mortality

WEDNESDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- Women with a history of pregnancy complications may have an increased risk for coronary artery disease (CAD) and cardiac death, according to research presented this week at the American College of Cardiology conference in Atlanta.

Mimi S. Biswas, M.D., of Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C., and colleagues assessed 415 patients who were in both the Duke University Perinatal and Health Services Outcomes Database and the Duke Information System for Cardiovascular Care database, including 214 women with pregnancy complications.

The median age at delivery was 28 years, and 41 years at catheterization. Thirty-five percent of women with pregnancy complications had diabetes, hypertension, unstable angina and CAD diagnosed via catheterization compared with 24 percent of patients without complications. After adjustment, any adverse pregnancy outcome was associated with CAD (odds ratio 2.6) and cardiac mortality (hazard ratio 2.4).

"More cross-disciplinary collaboration is needed to preventively treat women long after the pregnancy complications have been solved," Biswas said in a statement. "Recognizing the impact of these factors on future cardiovascular health and developing early preventive interventions could significantly increase these patients' chance of survival."

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