OBJECTIVES:: We assessed whether hypertension in pregnancy is associated with elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) levels in later life, possibly reflecting an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). BACKGROUND:: Elevated CRP levels have been associated with hypertension in pregnancy and with CVD. METHODS:: We studied 2463 women from the Genetic Epidemiology Network of Arteriopathy (GENOA) study. Participants were categorized as nulliparous women (nâ€Š=â€Š219), women with a history of normotensive pregnancies (nâ€Š=â€Š1839), or women with a history of a hypertensive pregnancy (nâ€Š= â€Š405). Using multiple linear regression models, we compared mean CRP levels among the groups after adjusting for age, race, education, smoking, hypertension, personal history of coronary heart disease (CHD) or stroke, diabetes, dyslipidemia, statins, hormone replacement therapy, and family history of CHD or stroke. As CRP levels may be influenced by BMI, the model was fit both with and without adjusting for BMI. RESULTS:: There was no significant difference in CRP levels between nulliparous women and those with a history of normotensive pregnancies, either with (Pâ€Š= â€Š0.82) or without (Pâ€Š= â€Š0.46) adjusting for BMI. In contrast, women with hypertensive pregnancies, compared with those with normotensive pregnancies, had higher CRP levels, both with (Pâ€Š=â€Š0. 009) and without (Pâ€Š<â€Š0.001) adjusting for BMI. CONCLUSION:: A history of hypertension in pregnancy is associated with elevated CRP levels later in life, independent of traditional CVD risk factors and BMI. An elevated CRP may reflect an inflammatory state in women with a history of hypertensive pregnancy disorders who are at increased risk for CVD.
- C-reactive protein
- cardiovascular disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine