(HealthDay News) — Women with hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP), with or without prepregnancy hypertension, have an increased risk for incident heart failure, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

Angela M. Malek, PhD, from the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, and colleagues conducted a retrospective cohort study involving 425,649 women aged 12 to 49 years with a live, singleton birth to examine the associations of HDP and prepregnancy hypertension with maternal heart failure within 1 and 5 years of delivery.

Of the participants, 0.4% had prepregnancy hypertension without superimposed HDP, 15.7% had HDP alone, 2.2% had both prepregnancy hypertension and HDP, and 81.7% had neither condition. The researchers found that incident heart failure event rates were higher for non-Hispanic Black versus non-Hispanic White women with HDP (HDP: 2.28 vs 0.96 per 1000 person-years; both conditions: 4.30 vs 1.22 per 1000 person-years). Incident heart failure risk within 5 years of delivery was increased for women with prepregnancy hypertension, HDP, and both conditions compared with neither condition (hazard ratios, 2.55, 4.20, and 5.25, respectively) after adjustment.

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“These racial and ethnic differences are important since we already know non-Hispanic Black women experience higher pregnancy-related deaths than non-Hispanic White women,” Malek said in a statement. “Clinical and public health prevention efforts are needed to reduce complications and death rates in women who have hypertensive disorders before or during pregnancy.”

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