Risk Associated With Valvular Regurgitation During Pregnancy

Birgit Pfaller, Angelo Dave Javier, Jasmine Grewal, Nadia Gabarin, Jack Colman, Marla Kiess, Rachel M Wald, Mathew Sermer, Samuel C Siu, Candice K Silversides

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

14 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Pregnancies in women with regurgitant valve lesions are generally considered low risk, but this has not been well studied.

OBJECTIVES: This study determined the frequency of adverse cardiac events (CEs) in pregnant women with moderate or severe regurgitant valve lesions.

METHODS: Maternal and fetal outcomes in women with moderate or severe chronic valve regurgitation enrolled in a prospective multicenter study on pregnancy outcomes were examined. Adverse CEs included heart failure, sustained arrhythmias, cardiac arrest, or death. A multivariate logistic regression model was used to identify determinants of CEs in women at the highest risk.

RESULTS: Outcomes of 430 pregnancies in women with moderate or severe regurgitant lesions were examined: 145 with mitral regurgitation (MR), 101 with pulmonary regurgitation (PR), 71 with multivalve disease, 73 with tricuspid regurgitation (TR), and 40 with aortic regurgitation (AR). Most women had associated congenital or acquired heart disease. Adverse CEs occurred in 13% of pregnancies: 27% of pregnancies with multivalve disease; 15% with MR; 15% with TR; 5% with AR; and 3% with PR. Maternal mortality was rare. In women with MR, TR, or multivalve disease (n = 289), left ventricular systolic dysfunction (p = 0.001), pulmonary hypertension (p = 0.005), and cardiac events before pregnancy (p < 0.001) were important determinants of CEs during pregnancy.

CONCLUSIONS: Women with AR and PR are at low risk for cardiac complications during pregnancy. While many women with MR, TR, and multivalve regurgitation do well during pregnancy, additional clinical variables help stratify those at highest risk. This new information will enhance the quality and precision of preconception counseling and pregnancy planning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2656-2664
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American College of Cardiology
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2021


  • Adult
  • British Columbia/epidemiology
  • Female
  • Heart Valve Diseases/congenital
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Small for Gestational Age
  • Ontario/epidemiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Cardiovascular/epidemiology
  • Pregnancy Outcome/epidemiology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Young Adult
  • complications
  • valve lesions
  • pregnancy
  • heart disease
  • regurgitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Risk Associated With Valvular Regurgitation During Pregnancy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this