An increased prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) has been found in women of childbearing age, with the presence of CVD in pregnant women posing a difficult clinical scenario in which the responsibility of the treating physician extends to the unborn fetus. Profound changes occur in the maternal circulation that have the potential to adversely affect maternal and fetal health, especially in the presence of underlying heart conditions. Up to 4% of pregnancies may have cardiovascular complications despite no known prior disease.
The European Society of Cardiology has published guidelines on the management of cardiovascular disease during pregnancy.[