Uncorrected congenital heart disease may lead to increased risks in pregnant women

Pregnant women with congenital heart disease (CHD) who have not had surgery to repair their cardiac condition are more likely to experience cardiac events or maternal death, especially those with certain conditions in emerging countries, according to a study published Oct. 9 in JACC: Heart Failure.

Researchers examined 5,739 pregnancies in 53 countries. A total of 3,295 women had CHD, with 1,059 uncorrected. Of these, 41.4 percent were from emerging countries. There were marked differences in cardiac defects in uncorrected versus corrected CHD with primary shunt lesions (44.7 percent vs 32.4 percent), valvular abnormalities (33.5 percent vs 12.6 percent) and Tetralogy of Fallot/Pulmonary atresia (0.8 percent vs 20.3 percent), p

"This analysis of a large, prospective contemporary global cohort of women presenting with uncorrected CHD highlights a different disease profile and more complicated disease at presentation, compared to women who had access to cardiac interventions," the authors write. "This information will provide some guidance to physicians who care for those patients and may alert them to potential risks."

American College of Cardiology