medwireNews: Research presented at the EULAR 2022 Congress in Copenhagen, Denmark, suggests that maternal and fetal morbidity remain high among pregnant women with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), despite reductions in mortality in recent decades.
Bella Mehta (Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, USA) and team found higher rates of severe maternal morbidity among 51,161 women with SLE relative to 40 million women without SLE who had hospital births in the USA between 2008 and 2017. This included higher rates of puerperal cerebrovascular disorders (4.8 vs 1.1%), blood transfusion (4.0 vs 1.1%), acute renal failure (1.5 vs 0.1%), and eclampsia or disseminated intravascular coagulation (1.3 vs 0.4%).
SLE was also associated with elevated rates of fetal morbidity. Mehta said that rates of preterm delivery were “almost doubled” among women with versus without SLE (14.5 vs 7.3%), while rates of intrauterine growth restriction were elevated approximately threefold (8.0 vs 2.7%).
These findings show that “morbidity is still high” among pregnant women with SLE, in contrast to previous study results showing that in-hospital maternal mortality rates have improved significantly for these women since the early 2000s, remarked the presenter.
She concluded that the results from the current study “can help inform physicians to counsel and manage patients with SLE during pregnancy and its planning.”
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