Pregnancy-Related Stroke Hospitalizations Rise in the U.S.

Increase in hypertension, heart disease from 1994 to 2007 mainly responsible for trend

THURSDAY, July 28 (HealthDay News) -- The rate of pregnancy-related hospitalizations for stroke have increased in the United States, especially during the postpartum period, from 1994-1995 to 2006-2007, mainly due to changes in prevalence of hypertension and heart disease, according to a study published online July 28 in Stroke.

Elena V. Kuklina, M.D., Ph.D., from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues describe the prevalence and trends in stroke hospitalizations for women in the antenatal, delivery, and postpartum periods from 1994-1995 to 2006-2007. Stroke cases were identified according to the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, and hospital discharge data were obtained from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample of the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project.

The investigators found that, between 1994-1995 and 2006-2007, the rate of stroke among antenatal and postpartum hospitalizations increased by 47 and 83 percent, respectively, but remained unchanged for delivery hospitalizations. In 2006 to 2007, concurrent hypertension or heart disease were found in around 32 percent of antenatal and 53 percent of postpartum hospitalizations with stroke. Most of the increases in postpartum hospitalizations with stroke from 1994-1995 to 2006-2007 were due to changes in the prevalence of hypertension and heart diseases over this period.

"Our results have demonstrated an increasing trend in the rate of pregnancy-related hospitalizations with stroke in the United States, especially during the postpartum period, from 1994-1995 to 2006-2007," the authors write.

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