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Cardiometabolic Risk Factors in Pregnancy and Implications for Long-Term Health: Identifying the Research Priorities for Low-Resource Settings

  • Nagraj, Shobhana
  • Kennedy, Stephen H.
  • Norton, Robyn
  • Jha, Vivekananda
  • Praveen, Devarsetty
  • Hinton, Lisa
  • Hirst, Jane E.
Publication Date
Jan 15, 2020
Apollo - University of Cambridge Repository
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Cardiometabolic disorders (CMDs), including ischemic heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes are the leading causes of mortality and morbidity in women worldwide. The burden of CMDs falls disproportionately on low and middle-income countries (LMICs), placing substantial demands on already pressured health systems. Cardiometabolic disorders may present up to a decade earlier in some LMIC settings, and are associated with high-case fatality rates. Early identification and ongoing postpartum follow-up of women with pregnancy complications such as hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDPs), and gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) may offer opportunities for prevention, or help delay onset of CMDs. This mini-review paper presents an overview of the key challenges faced in the early identification, referral and management of pregnant women at increased risk of CMDs, in low-resource settings worldwide. Evidence-based strategies, including novel diagnostics, technology and innovations for early detection, screening and management for pregnant women at high-risk of CMDs are presented. The review highlights the key research priorities for addressing cardiometabolic risk in pregnancy in low-resource settings.

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