In the last 10 years the incidence of strokes among pregnant women has increased by more than 50%. Although strokes have decreased among older women, they are rising in young and middle aged women.
Hospitalizations for pregnancy-related strokes and "mini strokes" jumped from 4,100 in 1995 to 6,300 in 2006. This is a 54 percent increase. Data supporting this discovery was mined from federal hospitalization statistics in all 50 states.
Strokes during pregnancy are largely due to high blood pressure issues in women who are overweight or obese. High blood pressure in pregnancy is particularly harmful, both for baby and mother. Part of the problem also comes from women having babies later in life when high blood pressure is more common.