Abstract P194: Nulliparity is Associated with Greater Common Carotid Artery Intima Media Thickness and Adventitial Diameter in Overweight and Obese Young Women
Introduction: Higher parity (number of births) is associated with increased subclinical cardiovascular disease (CVD) in mid-life and older women, and with increased risk of CVD overall. In the only study of reproductive age women, common carotid artery intima-media thickness was greater with each birth. These women were leaner than the US population (mean BMI 24 kg/m2), and their fertility history was not assessed. Neither the relationship between parity and subclinical CVD in overweight and obese young women, nor the role infertility plays in this relationship, has been evaluated.
Hypothesis: We hypothesized that increased parity would be associated with increased intima-media thickness (IMT) and adventitial diameter (AD) in overweight and obese young women without known fertility problems.
Methods: The Slow Adverse Vascular Effects (SAVE) trial provided 349 adults, aged 25-45 years old, BMI 25-39.9 kg/m2, with intensive weight loss interventions. Participants were normotensive and non-diabetic. B-mode ultrasound was used to measure IMT and AD at baseline. An ancillary study obtained reproductive histories of 73% (191 of 261) of the women in the trial. Linear regression was used to estimate the relationship between parity and IMT and AD. Demographic, cardiovascular and reproductive risk factors were covariates in the multivariate models.
Results: There were 70 nulliparous (age 34.9 ± 7.1) and 102 parous women (age 39.5 ± 4.9). Parous women (parity 2.0 ± .7) had decreased common carotid artery AD and IMT than nulliparous women after adjustment for age, race and cardiovascular disease risk factors (Table 1). No other reproductive factors were statistically significant.
Conclusions:Contrary to our hypothesis, this analysis demonstrates that parity is associated with markers of healthier common carotid arteries in a sample of disease-free, overweight or obese young women. This may represent a beneficial effect of pregnancy or indicate overall better health in overweight women who are capable of childbearing.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.