• Bookmark and Share

AHA Guidelines Recognize Preeclampsia as CVD Risk Factor

Last Updated on Monday, February 28, 2011

In an unprecedented move, the American Heart Association (AHA) updated its cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines for women last month to recognize preeclampsia and other pregnancy complications as risk factors for cardiovascular diseases (CVD), such as heart attack and stroke.

According to the AHA's press release: "[W]omen with a history of preeclampsia face double the risk of stroke, heart disease and dangerous clotting in veins during the five to 15 years after pregnancy. Essentially, having pregnancy complications can now be considered equivalent to having failed a stress test."

The updated guidelines are an exciting accomplishment for the Preeclampsia Foundation, which has long advocated for the recognition of preeclampsia as an important risk marker for cardiovascular disease. The Foundation joins a list of more than 20 professional and lay organizations who endorse the report.  Executive Director Eleni Tsigas explained: “[The new guidelines] recommend a pregnancy history for all women when assessing cardiovascular risk and count preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and pregnancy induced hypertension as part of the risk scoring. Unfortunately, they do not differentiate early onset and recurrent preeclampsia as being especially high risk.  Nonetheless, it is encouraging to see that healthcare providers are being asked to include pregnancy history as an important and relevant part of a patient’s medical history.”

As “at risk” individuals, preeclampsia survivors should educate themselves about cardiovascular disease and available mechanisms for risk reduction.  Stop smoking, improve your diet, and exercise regularly.  Most importantly, always talk to your healthcare provider about your pregnancy history and how you can work together to reduce your risk for future heart disease.

Additional information and recommendations for preeclampsia survivors can be found in the Preeclampsia Foundation’s "Preeclampsia and Heart Disease" brochure.

UPCOMING EVENTS

We’ll be Speaking Here

2016 ACOG-CDC Meeting on Maternal Safety and Mortality
Washington DC

May 15, 2016 

 

Healthy Start Coalition of Miami-Dade Prematurity Symposium
Miami, FL

May 20, 2016

 

 

11th Annual Texas Conference on Health Disparities
Ft. Worth, TX

June 9-10, 2016

 

Invite Us to Speak at Your Event

 

Preeclampsia in the News

Featured Video

What’s Happening on Twitter

Preeclampsia La preeclampsia puede afectar tu vida y la de toda tu familia. #TuVidaYLaSuya https://t.co/MyoXULDM4x
2hreplyretweetfavorite
Preeclampsia Are you the #faceofpreeclampsia? Share your story at https://t.co/gwhj1dOoGd. Any woman. Any pregnancy. #PreAM16
3hreplyretweetfavorite
Preeclampsia 500,000 babies die worldwide each year because of preeclampsia, due to preterm labor, placental abruption & other complications. #PreAM16
6hreplyretweetfavorite

Press Releases by Year

Other Resources

JOIN OUR MAILING LIST. We respect your privacy.