For women who experience miscarriage, heart attack risk runs high

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Women who experience miscarriage need to take extra care of their hearts. It seems that recent studies show that women who have recurrent miscarriage are five times more likely to have a heart attack later in life.

As miscarriage is one of the most common complications in pregnancy, affecting as many as 20% of conceptions, this statistic is very important to taking preemptive measures to protect heart health for thousands of women.

Over 11,000 women were in the study which took place through the Heidelberg arm of EPIC, a large European study that is tracking the impact of diet and lifestyle on disease.

The researchers looked at the women’s weight, level of exercise, and diet among other things. No significant association was found between any of the types of pregnancy loss and an increased risk of stroke. However, a pattern developed for those women who had miscarried or had a stillbirth.

Having one stillbirth increased the risk of heart attack 3.5 times. Women who had had more than three miscarriages were nine times more likely to experience a heart attack. Adjustments were made for other risk factors. “These results suggest that women who experienced spontaneous pregnancy loss are at a substantially higher risk of [heart attack] later in life,” stated the authors of the study, published in the journal Heart.

“Recurrent miscarriage and stillbirth are strong gender predictors for [this] and thus should be considered as important indicators for monitoring cardiovascular risk factors and preventive measures,” they concluded.

Source: BMJ, ScienceDaily


 
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