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Evidence in the field of CVD in pregnancy is sparse, but the condition remains a concern:
Date:8/30/2011

Pre-existing heart disease in pregnancy remains a concern. Complications are frequent and in some cases may be life-threatening for both the mother and her child. In Europe maternal heart disease has now become the major cause of maternal death during pregnancy.

As interim data from the ESC's special registry on pregnancy in cardiac disease suggests, the numbers of women at risk is not in decline, mainly because of today's older age at first pregnancy and with it a concomitant increase in risks of diabetes, hypertension and obesity.

Professor Jolien Roos-Hesselink, joint chairman of the ESC registry together with Professor Roger Hall (Norwich, UK), reported that the most frequently diagnosed condition in the registry population was congenital heart disease, found in around 60% of subjects. More than 1300 women have been enrolled into the registry so far - from 28 countries and 60 centres; they consist of 869 women with congenital heart disease, 333 with valvular heart disease patients, 79 with cardiomyopathy and 24 with ischaemic heart disease.

Professor Roos-Hesselink said that evidence in this field is sparse, with randomised trials impossible to perform: "So the only way to improve our knowledge of the factors which determine outcome in pregnant women with heart disease is to gather data on a large number of pregnancies and try to find patterns of outcome which correlate with management strategies. In this way we might determine the areas of danger for both mother and child and the best forms of treatment."

It was because of the need to generate relevant data in areas such as this, that the concept of European registries was developed in 2006. Data collection in the pregnancy and CVD registry began in 2008, with information recorded on CVD diagnosis, medication, cardiac complications, obstetric complications, and pregnancy outcome at six months.

An interim analysis of these pregnancies was presented at the ESC Con
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Contact: Jacqueline Partarrieu
press@escardio.org
33-633-473-335
European Society of Cardiology
Source:Eurekalert

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