Peripartum Cardiomyopathy: Position Statement

Heart failure (HF) in the puerperium was recognized as early as the nineteenth century.1 Peripartum cardiomyopathy (PPCM) is not caused by aggravation of an underlying idiopathic dilated cardio-myopathy (IDCM) by pregnancy-mediated volume overload. Haemodynamic stresses reach their peak just before delivery and volume load is greatly reduced after delivery, which is when PPCM often presents. Instead, it is now widely accepted that PPCM is distinct from other types of HF2, although the cardiac phenotype of PPCM resembles that of a DCM. The clinical course, however, is highly variable and rapid progression to end-stage HF may occur, often within a few days.3 On the other hand, spontaneous and complete recovery of ventricular function may also occur. Both features are unusual in other forms of cardiomyopathy.4,5 [Download PDF]

Sliwa K, Hilfiker-Kleiner D, Petrie M, Mebazaa A, Pieske B, Buchmann E, Regitz-Zagrosek V, Schaufelberger M, Tavazzi L, van Veldhuisen D, Watkins H, Shah A, Seferovic P, Elkayam U, Pankuweit S, Papp Z, Mouquet F, and McMurray J Current state of knowledge on aetiology, diagnosis, management, and therapy of peripartum cardiomyopathy: a position statement from the Heart Failure Association of the European Society of Cardiology Working Group on peripartum cardiomyopathyCirculation 2010: 1 August