Continuing Medical Education

Cardiac disease in pregnancy: When to raise the ‘red flag’

P Soma-Pillay, J Anthony, S D Mandondo


Cardiac disease in pregnancy is an important cause of maternal morbidity and mortality and is the second most common cause of indirect maternal death in South Africa. Although most women with cardiac disease cope well throughout pregnancy, some conditions are associated with an increased risk. Appropriate management of cardiac disease in pregnancy requires expert assessment, risk categorisation and ongoing care. The objective of this article is to assist clinicians to identify and modify risk factors associated with cardiac disease in pregnancy and thus reduce avoidable morbidity and mortality.

Authors' affiliations

P Soma-Pillay, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Steve Biko Academic Hospital and University of Pretoria, South Africa

J Anthony, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Groote Schuur Hospital and University of Cape Town, South Africa

S D Mandondo, National Committee for the Confidential Enquiry into Maternal Deaths, East London, South Africa

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Obstetric medicine; Prosthetic heart valve; Rheumatic heart disease; Maternal mortality

Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2018;108(11):901-906. DOI:10.7196/SAMJ.2018.v108i11.13378

Article History

Date submitted: 2018-10-26
Date published: 2018-10-26

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