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Certain health conditions during pregnancy increase women's risk of heart problems later

Thursday - 2/27/2014, 11:48am  ET

WASHINGTON -- More women die of heart disease than men. And while the risk factors are pretty similar for both sexes, some conditions during pregnancy can increase a woman's chances of heart problems later.

Dr. Nakela Cook, with the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, says there are indications that high blood pressure and diabetes during pregnancy can have an impact.

She says new data show "cardiovascular disease rates may be higher among women who have these conditions as compared to those who don't."

Cardiovascular disease includes both heart disease and stroke.

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association recently released the first set of stroke guidelines specifically for women.

Those guidelines make specific mention of the dangers posed by two blood pressure disorders that can occur during pregnancy: preeclampsia and eclampsia.

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