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Pregnant women with hypertension and their siblings face increased risk of heart disease

Siblings of women with high blood pressure during pregnancy are also at increased risk of hypertension


2015-08-28
(Press-News.org) Highlights Compared with their sister(s) who had normal blood pressure during pregnancy, women who had hypertension in pregnancy were more likely to develop hypertension later in life. Brothers and sisters of women who had high blood pressure during pregnancy were at increased risk of developing high blood pressure later in life. Brothers, but not sisters, of women who had high blood pressure in pregnancy were also at increased risk of developing heart disease.

Hypertension develops in approximately 8% of pregnancies.

Washington, DC (August 27, 2015) -- High blood pressure during pregnancy is a risk factor for future hypertension and cardiovascular disease, but it's not clear if this increased risk is because these women are more likely to have a family history of heart disease or if elevated blood pressure during pregnancy causes long-term metabolic and vascular abnormalities. A study appearing in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN) now provides some insights.

To investigate the issue, a team led by Tracey Weissgerber, PhD and Vesna Garovic, MD (Mayo Clinic) analyzed information on 919 men and 1477 women from 954 sibships who participated in the Genetic Epidemiology Network of Arteriopathy study, which examined the genetics of hypertension in white, black, and Hispanic siblings. "We wanted to isolate the effect of high blood pressure during pregnancy by comparing the risk of hypertension, heart disease, and stroke in women who had hypertension during pregnancy, and their sisters," explained Dr. Garovic. "We also wanted to determine whether heart disease risk was increased in brothers and sisters of women who had hypertension in pregnancy."

Among the major findings: Compared with their sister(s) who had normal blood pressures during pregnancy, women who had hypertension in pregnancy were 75% more likely to develop hypertension later in life. Men and women whose sister(s) had hypertension in pregnancy were 24% and 15% more likely to develop hypertension later in life, respectively, when compared with men and women from families in which no sister had hypertension in pregnancy. Brothers, but not sisters, of women who had hypertension in pregnancy were also more likely to have cardiovascular disease later in life.

"The increased risk of high blood pressure in siblings suggests that family history contributes to the increased risk of high blood pressure in women during pregnancy; however, women who had high blood pressure in pregnancy were still more likely to develop high blood pressure later in life than their sisters who had normal blood pressure in pregnancy," said Dr. Weissgerber. "Further studies are needed to determine whether this increased risk in women who had high blood pressure in pregnancy is due to stronger genetic predisposition to high blood pressure, other risk factors, or lasting damage caused by high blood pressure in pregnancy."

INFORMATION:

Study co-authors include Stephen Turner, MD, Thomas Mosley Jr., PhD, Sharon Kardia, PhD, Craig Hanis, PhD, and Natasa Milic, MD, PhD.

Disclosures: The authors reported no financial disclosures.

The article, entitled "Hypertension in Pregnancy and Future Cardiovascular Event Risk in Siblings," will appear online at http://jasn.asnjournals.org/ on August 27, 2015.

The content of this article does not reflect the views or opinions of The American Society of Nephrology (ASN). Responsibility for the information and views expressed therein lies entirely with the author(s). ASN does not offer medical advice. All content in ASN publications is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions, or adverse effects. This content should not be used during a medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Please consult your doctor or other qualified health care provider if you have any questions about a medical condition, or before taking any drug, changing your diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment. Do not ignore or delay obtaining professional medical advice because of information accessed through ASN. Call 911 or your doctor for all medical emergencies.

Founded in 1966, and with more than 15,000 members, the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) leads the fight against kidney disease by educating health professionals, sharing new knowledge, advancing research, and advocating the highest quality care for patients.


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[Press-News.org] Pregnant women with hypertension and their siblings face increased risk of heart disease
Siblings of women with high blood pressure during pregnancy are also at increased risk of hypertension
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