Toronto, April 2: Women who give birth to infants with congenital heart defects may have an increased risk of heart problems, including heart attack and heart failure, later in life, warns a new study. Compared to mothers of infants without congenital heart defects, the researchers found 43 per cent higher risk of any cardiovascular hospitalisation in women whose offspring had critical heart defects. The study of more than one million women also showed 24 per cent higher risk of any cardiovascular hospitalisation in women whose infants had non-critical defects.
For the research the researchers alysed data on women who delivered infants between 1989 and 2013 in Quebec, Cada, who had critical, non-critical or no heart defects. They tracked the women up to 25 years after pregncy for hospitalisations related to cardiovascular disease including heart attack, heart failure, atherosclerotic disorders and heart transplants.
“Caring for infants with critical heart defects is associated with psychosocial and fincial stress, which may increase the mothers’ long-term risk for cardiovascular disease,” said the study’s lead author thalie Auger from the University of Montreal Hospital Research Centre in Quebec. While a genetic component cannot be excluded, the psychosocial impact of congenital heart disease on caregivers may have a cumulative effect over the long term because 85 per cent of infants with heart defects now survive past adolescence, suggests the study. (IANS)