Introduction: Preeclampsia is a pregnancy specific disorder which affects 2%-8% of all
gestations and is associated with high maternal, fetal and neonatal morbidity and mortality worldwide.
There is no “cure” for the disease except for early delivery of the fetus and placenta, however
leaving preeclampsia a long term health risk both for mothers and infants.
Aim: The aim of the study is to review currently available information linking preclampsia to longterm
cardiovascular complications in infants and children.
Results: Currently, there is evidence of predisposition to cardiovascular disease, and a higher incidence
of cardiovascular risk factors among children born to preeclamptic mothers. Both in experimental
models and human epidemiological studies it is now clear that the infants of pregnancies
complicated by preeclampsia have an increased risk of developing high blood pressure and double
the risk of stroke in later life. Preeclampsia is consistently associated with higher blood pressure
and body mass index as early as 4–10 years of age. Also there is some evidence of higher cardiovascular
risk in adults exposed to maternal hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. It seems that
preeclampsia has an impact on the cardiovascular system independent of preterm birth and is associated
with endothelial dysfunction, increased carotid intima media thickness and reductions in cardiac
function that cannot be accounted for by prematurity alone.
Conclusion: Taking into consideration the currently available evidence, it can now be suggested
that preeclampsia is linked to adverse effects on the cardiometabolic health of the infant. Understanding
the relationship between preeclampsia and cardiovascular disease will allow for implementation
of early interventions to prevent or delay the onset of adverse events in this high risk