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High Blood Pressure in Pregnancy Could Cause Problems Later

High Blood Pressure in Pregnancy Could Cause Problems Later

Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes

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Dr. Kim Mulvihill ReportingDuring pregnancy, many women suffer from high blood pressure and new research finds this condition may cause complications down the road.

About 10-percent of pregnancies are complicated by high blood pressure. New research calls into question the commonly held belief that high blood pressure during pregnancy is a fleeting problem with no adverse effects on later health.

Thanks to ultrasound, pregnant women can get an early look at their baby. But pregnancy itself can give women an early look at their own future health -- especially if their blood pressure becomes an issue.

New research shows women with high blood pressure during pregnancy have a 57% higher chance of developing risk factors for heart disease later in life.

Previous research has shown a connection between high blood pressure and heart disease, but this study reveals even mild elevations in blood pressure during pregnancy can signal problems in the future. That's true even if a woman's blood pressure returns to normal after delivery.

Experts say it's all the more reason for these women to be proactive and make changes now to protect their hearts in the long run. That means adopting a healthy lifestyle, getting regular exercise, eating a balanced diet and maintaining a healthy weight.

Making changes now sure beats the alternatives -- heart disease, stroke, kidney disease.

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