Postpartum Cardiomyopathy Incidence and Death Rate

1 min read

Latest study on postpartum cardiomyopathy in North Carolina, estimates the incidence to be 1 case for every 2,772 live births with a 7-year case-fatality rate was 16.5% . This equates to 14 deaths based on one birth year, in North Carolina alone and these are conservative estimates because potential cases were identified from discharge ICD-9-CM codes and leaves out women who were diagnosed weeks after giving birth.

Calculating the incidence of PPCM for the total US, as 1 in 3342 and the mortality rate at 13.66%, using the Black population of the US as 12.5%, north carolina as 22% and making the assumption that the incidence and fatality of PPCM is 4 X more likely among Black women. This adjusts the figures to a total of 1185 incidents of PPCM in the US based on 3,961,000 births and 176 deaths related to PPCM.

Reading over the study, it says 'experiencing an obstetric delivery or a pregnancy-related death before delivery ' - it seems that if a woman developed PPCM after discharge but did not die in the 7 years, she would not be picked up in the count.

PPCM Incidence is difficult to estimate because congestive heart failure, does not always happen at the time of delivery but may happen weeks or months after, meaning that these cases may not be counted as pregnancy related. According to Centers for Disease Control,

"We searched this huge database in order to identify women who died of pregnancy-related causes but who weren't captured in the original statistics," said researcher Christine Morton. They discovered that almost half of the women who had died of cardiomyopathy weren't counted—probably because the women had died months after giving birth, not within the six weeks traditionally allowed for a "maternal death."

Related Articles

Plant based diet and PPCM

Dr. Kim Williams, president of the American College of Cardiology and chief of cardiology at Rush University, advocates a plant-based diet. William says, "the

East Carolina University PPCM Study

PPCM Study information: East Carolina University has partnered with leading medical institutions to study quality of life issues in women diagnosed with Peripartum Cardiomyopathy (PPCM)

Help Support my work

Money goes towards my writing, advocacy work, hosting and web development.

Support me

Subscribe to My Heart Sisters

Get the latest posts delivered right to your inbox