The registry data, collected during 2007-2018, showed a clear increase in the percentage of women with WHO class IV cardiovascular disease who became pregnant and entered the registry despite the contraindication designation for that classification, rising from about 1% of enrolled women in 2008 and 2009 to more than 10% of women in 2013, 2016, and 2017. “Individualization is necessary, but all these women are at very high risk and should be counseled against pregnancy,” Dr. Roos-Hesselink said.
The Registry of Pregnancy and Cardiac Disease (
Delivery was by cesarean section in 44% of the pregnancies, roughly twice the rate in women without diagnosed cardiac disease, even though published guidelines don’t advise cesarean delivery because of cardiac disease, Dr. Roos-Hesselink said. “Cesarean sections are used too often, in my opinion,” she commented, but added that many of these women require delivery at a tertiary, specialized center.
Overall fetal mortality was 1%, nearly threefold higher than in pregnancies in women without cardiac disease, and the overall incidence of fetal and neonatal complications was especially high, at 53%, in women with pulmonary arterial hypertension. The incidence of obstetrical complications was roughly similar across the range of cardiac disease type, ranging from 16% to 24%. Premature delivery occurred in 28% of women in the high-risk WHO IV class, compared with a 13% rate among women in the WHO I class. The mortality rate was 0.2% among the WHO class I women, and their heart failure incidence was 5%.
The ROPAC registry is sponsored by the European Society of Cardiology. Dr. Roos-Hesselink had no disclosures.