ROME (FRONTLINE MEDICAL NEWS) – It’s fortunate that pregnancy-associated acute MIs are infrequent, because the associated in-hospital mortality is markedly higher than in similar-age nonchildbearing women, Reza Masoomi, MD, said at the annual congress of the European Society of Cardiology.

One likely contributor to the disparity in outcome is that current management appears to feature underutilization of percutaneous intervention in women who experience pregnancy-associated MI, according to Dr. Masoomi of the University of Kansas in Kansas City.

He presented an analysis of the U.S. National Inpatient Sample database for the years 2008-2012. The NIS is a nationally representative sample of hospitalizations drawn from all of the country’s nonfederal acute-care hospitals.

A total of 55,315 hospitalizations with a discharge diagnosis of acute MI were recorded in women aged 15-54 years during the study years, of which 453 involved an ante- or postpartum MI. Extrapolating from those figures, nearly 262,000 women aged 15-54 years across the U.S. had an acute MI during the study years, of whom an estimated 2,153 experienced a pregnancy-associated MI.

In-hospital mortality among women with peripregnancy MI was 7.2%, significantly higher than the 5.2% rate in women who weren’t pregnant.

Women with peripregnancy MI had a significantly higher rate of ST-elevation MI (STEMI) than did nonpregnant women with MI in their reproductive years, by a margin of 35.3% to 32.8%. They were younger, too: an average age of 34.9 years, compared with 47.3 years in nonpregnant patients with an MI. Nearly two-thirds of women with peripregnancy MI were nonwhite, compared with 47.3% of the comparison group.

Regardless of whether women with peripregnancy MI had a STEMI or non-STEMI, they had significantly lower rates of diagnostic coronary angiography and percutaneous intervention. They were also far less likely to receive drug-eluting stents.

Diagnostic coronary angiography was performed in 59% of women with pregnancy-associated STEMI, compared with 73% of nonpregnant women with a STEMI. Only 34% of patients with peripregnancy STEMI underwent PCI, compared with 61% of nonpregnant women with a STEMI. Drug-eluting stents were implanted in 12% of peripregnancy STEMI patients and in 35% of nonpregnant patients. In contrast, 10% of patients with a pregnancy-related STEMI underwent coronary artery bypass surgery, compared with 5% of nonpregnant women with a STEMI.

The PCI rate among women with a peripregnancy non-STEMI was 7.8%, compared with 28.7% in nonpregnant women with a non-STEMI. However, CABG was utilized less frequently in the peripregnancy non-STEMI group, by a margin of 4.4% to 5.9%.

Dr. Masoomi reported having no financial conflicts regarding his study.