WEDNESDAY, April 19, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Individuals with prenatal depression have an increased risk for a new cardiovascular disease (CVD) diagnosis, according to a study published online April 19 in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

Christina M. Ackerman-Banks, M.D., from the Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut, and colleagues conducted a longitudinal population-based study involving pregnant persons with deliveries during 2007 to 2019 to estimate the cumulative risk for new CVD in the first 24 months postpartum among those diagnosed with prenatal depression versus those without depression diagnosed during pregnancy. Data were included for 119,422 pregnancies.

The researchers found that the risks for ischemic heart disease, arrhythmia/cardiac arrest, cardiomyopathy, and new hypertension were increased in association with prenatal depression (adjusted hazard ratios, 1.83, 1.60, 1.61, and 1.32, respectively). Several of these associations persisted when the analyses were stratified by co-occurring hypertensive disorders of pregnancy.

“Complications during pregnancy, including prenatal depression, impact long-term cardiovascular health,” Ackerman-Banks said in a statement. “The postpartum period provides an opportunity to counsel and screen people for cardiovascular disease in order to prevent these outcomes.”

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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