NYMC Faculty Publications

Peripartum Cardiomyopathy: Current Understanding of Pathophysiology, Diagnostic Workup, Management, and Outcomes

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Student, Faculty

Journal Title

Current Problems in Cardiology

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Peripartum cardiomyopathy (PPCM) is a relatively rare, potentially life-threatening, idiopathic form of cardiomyopathy that affects previously healthy young women during late pregnancy or in the early postpartum period and is characterized by left ventricular systolic dysfunction in the absence of any other identifiable cardiac causes. Morbidity and mortality with PPCM are remarkably high and it continues to be one of the leading causes of maternal death. Although remarkable advances have been made in our understanding of PPCM in the last few decades, unanswered questions remain regarding its pathophysiology, diagnostic workup, and management options. In this article, we will complete an updated, comprehensive review of PPCM, including the epidemiology and risk factors, proposed etiology, presentation and complications, management, prognostic indicators and outcomes. In addition, we will identify current challenges and gaps in knowledge.