For a study, researchers sought to calculate the probability of developing severe chronic hypertension (cHTN) within 7–10 years following a mildly problematic pregnancy with cHTN.

The study examined women who had mild cHTN during an index pregnancy between 2012 and 2014 as part of a retrospective cohort. Women were included if they had moderate cHTN throughout their pregnancy and received prenatal care at a single academic facility. Women who had severe cHTN, type 1 diabetes, systemic lupus erythematosus, cardiomyopathy, proteinuria, or creatinine levels of more than 1.1 mg/dL at baseline were excluded. The main outcome was a composite of new-onset cardiovascular disease complications or severe cHTN (defined as the development of two or more high blood pressures) more than 12 weeks after the index birth.

About 647 women with moderate cHTN satisfied the criterion for inclusion. Within 5-7 years of the initial pregnancy, 236 of these women (36.5%, 95% CI 32.8-40.2%) had the main composite outcome of severe cHTN. In comparison to White women, Black women made progress more quickly (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR] 1.99, 95% CI 1.43-2.76). Smoking was linked to a faster rate of development of severe cHTN (aHR 1.47, 95% CI 1.13-1.90).

Within 5-7 years, 1 in 3 of the women in the cohort who had mild cHTN during an initial pregnancy advanced to severe cHTN. Prospective research was required to support this conclusion.