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Preeclampsia, Eclampsia Linked to Increased Offspring Mortality

Maternal hypertensive disorders of pregnancy linked to increased risks for all-cause mortality, several cause-specific mortalities in offspring from birth to young adulthood

FRIDAY, Oct. 21, 2022 (HealthDay News) — Prenatal exposure to maternal preeclampsia, eclampsia, and hypertension is associated with an increased risk for offspring all-cause mortality, according to a study published online Oct. 19 in The BMJ.

Chen Huang, from Fudan University in China, and colleagues conducted a population-based cohort study to examine the association of maternal hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP) with overall and cause-specific mortality in offspring. Data were included for all 2,437,718 individuals live born in Denmark from 1978 to 2018, with follow-up data until death, emigration, or Dec. 31, 2018.

Overall, 102,095 mothers had HDP: 67,683 with preeclampsia, 679 with eclampsia, and 33,733 with hypertension. The researchers found that during follow-up to 41 years, there were 781 deaths in offspring born to mothers with preeclampsia, 17 born to mothers with eclampsia, 223 born to mothers with hypertension, and 19,119 born to mothers with no HDP (58.94, 133.73, 44.38, and 41.99 per 100,000 persons, respectively). Maternal HDP was associated with a significantly increased risk for all-cause mortality in offspring (hazard ratio, 1.26; 95 percent confidence interval, 1.18 to 1.34); the corresponding estimates were 1.29 (1.20 to 1.38), 2.88 (1.79 to 4.63), and 1.12 (0.98 to 1.28) for maternal preeclampsia, eclampsia, and hypertension. For several cause-specific mortalities, risks were also increased. The increased risks were stronger for offspring of mothers with early-onset and severe preeclampsia, with both HDP and diabetes history, or with HDP and low education level (hazard ratios, 6.06 [5.35 to 6.86], 1.57 [1.16 to 2.14], and 1.49 [1.34 to 1.66], respectively).

“The observed risk was among the highest for offspring exposed to early onset and severe maternal pre-eclampsia,” the authors write.

The study was partially funded by Novo Nordisk.

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