Prganant Woman with a Medical Doctor

Healthcare: Pregnant women with PCOS may be susceptible to heart complications during delivery −Study

*Health experts say there are long-term heart health risks for women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Researchers from Johns Hopkins Medicine, in a fresh study, explored some of the pregnancy risks for women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS).

Their study findings indicated that pregnant women with the hormone condition may be at a higher risk for cardiovascular issues during delivery.

Researcher Dr. Erin Michos said: “Oftentimes, women with PCOS are understandably concerned about the immediate effects of, like an irregular menstrual cycle, excess body hair, weight gain, and acne.

“However, the long-term cardiovascular complications are also a serious problem.”

The risk of pregnancy complications

In exploring the risk of pregnancy complications for the study, the researchers analysed data from over 17 million births between 2002 and 2019. The team also analysed how many women had PCOS while pregnant.

Among over 195,000 women who had PCOS at the time of delivery, it was clear that there was a link between PCOS and cardiovascular complications during pregnancy, agency report stated.

Blood clots proved to be the biggest risk: Women with PCOS were more than 80 percent more likely to develop a blood clot during delivery.

There was a nearly 80 percent higher risk for a weakened heart, a 76 percent higher risk of heart failure, and a 56 percent higher risk of preeclampsia, said researchers.

Women with PCOS were also twice as likely to have abnormal heartbeats at the time of delivery.

It is also significant to note that there were other health and demographic factors that came into play for pregnant women with PCOS.

The researchers learned that Black women with PCOS were at a higher risk of heart complications during delivery, while all women with PCOS were more likely to be obese, have high cholesterol, and struggle with diabetes.

Going forward, the researchers hope that these findings highlight the associated long-term heart health risks that are prevalent among women with PCOS.

Salman Zahid, one of the researchers, stated:

“Our study shows that PCOS is indeed a risk factor for acute cardiac complications at the time of delivery and should be taken seriously.

“We want to stress the importance of optimising the cardiovascular health of women with PCOS with prevention efforts, especially Black women and lower socioeconomic groups because we believe that those are the most vulnerable populations and will benefit most from intervention.”

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