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Pregnancy Hypertens. 2012 Jul;2(3):260. doi: 10.1016/j.preghy.2012.04.144. Epub 2012 Jun 13.

PP033. High blood pressure in pregnancy: an indicator of future health outcomes.

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School of Medicine, University of Western Sydney, Australia.
Renal Department, Liverpool Hospital, Australia.
RPA Women and Babies, Australia.
Renal Department, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, Australia.



Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP) remain a leading cause of maternal and perinatal morbidity and mortality worldwide. In Australia approximately 10% of all pregnancies are affected by HDP. There is growing evidence that endothelial damage caused by HDP remains after pregnancy and has long term consequences on maternal health.


The aim of our research was to determine the association between HDP and risk of having high blood pressure in later life.


Self-reported data regarding a physician's diagnosis of HDP and of high blood pressure later in life were obtained from women recruited from the 45 and Up Study, Australia. Relative risks (converted from odds ratios) and 99% confidence intervals were estimated using logistic regression, adjusting for demographic and lifestyle characteristics.


A total of 82,164 women were included in the study, of which 9,845 reported having HDP. Women who had HDP had a significantly increased risk of having high blood pressure later in life compared to women who did not have HDP (adjusted relative risk of 2.05, 99% CI 1.99-2.11, p<0.001). The results showed that women who had HDP develop high blood pressure 6.3 years (99% CI 5.85-6.66, p<0.001) earlier compared to women without HDP.


Women who have HDP are at a greater risk of future onset of high blood pressure compared to women who have a healthy pregnancy. Women with HDP should be monitored closely in the years following pregnancy for early identification and intervention of high blood pressure.

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