Blood Pressure Variation Throughout Pregnancy According to Early Gestational BMI: A Brazilian Cohort

Arq Bras Cardiol. 2015 Apr;104(4):284-91. doi: 10.5935/abc.20150007. Epub 2015 Feb 13.
[Article in En, Portuguese]

Abstract

Background: The maternal cardiovascular system undergoes progressive adaptations throughout pregnancy, causing blood pressure fluctuations. However, no consensus has been established on its normal variation in uncomplicated pregnancies.

Objective: To describe the variation in systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) levels during pregnancy according to early pregnancy body mass index (BMI).

Methods: SBP and DBP were measured during the first, second and third trimesters and at 30-45 days postpartum in a prospective cohort of 189 women aged 20-40 years. BMI (kg/m2) was measured up to the 13th gestational week and classified as normal-weight (<25.0) or excessive weight (≥ 25.0). Longitudinal linear mixed-effects models were used for statistical analysis.

Results: A decrease in SBP and DBP was observed from the first to the second trimester (βSBP=-0.394; 95%CI: -0.600- -0.188 and βDBP=-0.617; 95%CI: -0.780- -0.454), as was an increase in SBP and DBP up to 30-45 postpartum days (βSBP=0.010; 95%CI: 0.006-0.014 and βDBP=0.015; 95%CI: 0.012-0.018). Women with excessive weight at early pregnancy showed higher mean SBP in all gestational trimesters, and higher mean DBP in the first and third trimesters. Excessive early pregnancy BMI was positively associated with prospective changes in SBP (βSBP=7.055; 95%CI: 4.499-9.610) and in DBP (βDBP=3.201; 95%CI: 1.136-5.266).

Conclusion: SBP and DBP decreased from the first to the second trimester and then increased up to the postpartum period. Women with excessive early pregnancy BMI had higher SBP and DBP than their normal-weight counterparts throughout pregnancy, but not in the postpartum period.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Pressure / physiology*
  • Body Mass Index*
  • Brazil
  • Cohort Studies
  • Diastole / physiology
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Lost to Follow-Up
  • Obesity / physiopathology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Trimesters / physiology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Systole / physiology
  • Young Adult