Wednesday January 29, 2020

Rate of Blood Pressure among Pregnant Women Aged 35 and Over in US Increases by More than 75%

Women are having children later than in the 1970s and 1980s - and are experiencing higher rates of hypertension during pregnancy as a result

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Blood Pressure, Pregnant, Women
In the study, published in the journal Hypertension, researchers looked at the pregnancies of more than 151 million women in the US between 1970-2010. Pixabay

Researchers, including one of Indian-origin, have found that the rate of blood pressure (chronic hypertension) among pregnant women aged 35 and over in the US has increased by more than 75 per cent since 1970, according to a new research.

In the study, published in the journal Hypertension, researchers looked at the pregnancies of more than 151 million women in the US between 1970-2010.

“Women are having children later than in the 1970s and 1980s – and are experiencing higher rates of hypertension during pregnancy as a result,” said the study led by author and Indian origin researcher Cande V. Ananth from Rutgers University.

According to the researchers, advanced maternal age was associated with the increase, with the rate of chronic hypertension increasing on an average by six per cent per year, 13 times what it was in 1970.

Blood Pressure, Pregnant, Women
Researchers, including one of Indian-origin, have found that the rate of blood pressure (chronic hypertension) among pregnant women aged 35 and over in the US has increased. Pixabay

Prior research has shown that compared with white women, black women have higher rates of obesity, are more likely to smoke and use drugs and are at greater social disadvantage, all of which may contribute to an increased risk of chronic hypertension.

“The best outcome would be to control hypertension before becoming pregnant by reducing obesity, quitting smoking, adopting an overall healthier lifestyle before and during pregnancy, and treating high blood pressure effectively. For every 1-2 lbs. lost prior to pregnancy, blood pressure is reduced,” Ananth said.

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“Not only do these findings have implications for the health of the women and newborns during pregnancy, they have lasting implications on future risks of cardiovascular and stroke risks in women later in life,” he added. (IANS)

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BP Problems in Youth May Lead to Heart Diseases: Study

BP problems linked to higher heart disease risk in youths

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Heart
Wide swings in blood pressure readings among young adults are associated with a higher risk of heart disease. Pixabay

Wide swings in blood pressure readings among young adults are associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease by middle age, according to a new health study.

The findings, published in the journal JAMA Cardiology, suggests that the current practice of averaging blood pressure readings to determine whether medications are necessary could be masking a potential early warning sign from the fluctuations themselves.

“If a patient comes in with one reading in December and a significantly lower reading in January, the average might be within the range that would appear normal,” said study lead author Yuichiro Yano from Duke University in the US.

“But is that difference associated with health outcomes in later life?” Yano said.

“That’s the question we sought to answer in this study, and it turns out the answer is yes.” Yano added.

Heart BP
A systolic blood pressure reading over 130 is considered hypertensive and has long been a major risk factor for heart diseases. (Representational Image). Pixabay

The researchers arrived at their conclusion after analysing 30 years of data from a large, diverse cohort of young people enrolled in the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults study between March 1985 and June 1986.

Of the 3,394 people studied, about 46 per cent were African American and 56 per cent were women.

The patients had regular blood pressure checks, with patterns evaluated across five visits, including at two, five, seven and 10 years. At the 10-year mark, the average age of the patients was about 35.

The main reading of concern to Yano’s research team was the systolic blood pressure level, the upper number in the equation that measures the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart pumps.

The researchers were able to identify which young people had variations in systolic blood pressure by the age of 35 and then track them over the next 20 years and see whether there appeared to be a correlating increase in cardiovascular disease.

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Over those years, study participants reported 181 deaths and 162 cardio-vascular events, which included fatal and nonfatal coronary heart disease, hospitalisation for heart failure, stroke, transient ischemic attack, or a stent procedure for blocked arteries.

The researchers found that each 3.6-mm spike in systolic blood pressure during young adulthood was associated with a 15-percent higher risk for heart disease events, independent of the averaged blood pressure levels during young adulthood and any single systolic blood pressure measurement in midlife. (IANS)