In this last month we are hearing a lot about COVID-19 and how it causes a severe respiratory syndrome (that is why the virus’ name is SARS-COV-2). However, very little is said about what happen to pregnant women who are affected with the virus.
Since I have a couple of friends who are pregnant and a couple who are trying and I think that a lot of pregnant women (and their beloved ones) are asking themselves if they and their fetuses are safe, I searched scientific papers dealing with this topic.
Here is what I found.
Rasmussen and collaborators inform that pregnant women don’t appear to be more susceptible to infection than other section of the population. Moreover, at the moment data show that men have been affected more than women.
Chen and collaborators studied the cases of 9 third-trimester-pregnant women positive to SARS-COV-2 and admitted to Zhongnan Hospital in Wuhan between Jan 20th to 31st 2020.
They studied amniotic fluid, cord blood, breast milk and neonatal throat to asses the possible vertical transmission of the virus.
All 9 women delivered their healthy babies via C-section. All the analysis (amniotic fluid, cord blood, breast milk and neonatal throat) tested negative for the virus. Thus, there is no evidence of intrauterine infection and vertical transmission of COVID-19 from mother to fetus.
Another study was published by Liu and collaborators. The researchers studied the placenta tissue, vaginal mucus and breast milk of pregnant women and newly mothers admitted in the obstetric wards of Tongji Hospital in Wuhan. Again, none of the infants was infected and non evidence of vertical transmission was detected.
To conclude: my dear pregnant friends, who are around the world, don’t worry. Data show that your baby will be safe.
Chen et al., “Clinical characteristics and intrauterine vertical transmission potential of COVID-19 infection in nine pregnant women: a retrospective review of medical records”, (2020), https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30360-3
Liu et al., “Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) During Pregnancy: A Case Series”, (2020), 2020020373
Rasmussen et al., “Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and Pregnancy: What obstetricians need to know”, (2020), https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2020.02.017
Yang et al., “Novel coronavirus infection and pregnancy”, (2020), 10.1002/uog.22006