Do You Get Pregnant While You are in COVID-19 Infection?

SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19 infection is associated with an increased risk of preterm birth, but only for women infected in their final trimester. The study of over 5,000 pregnant women is one of the first to look at pregnancy outcomes for COVID-19 patients by trimester. There is limited data on pregnancy and COVID-19 infection, This research has been published in the open access journal PLOS ONE.

Till date, studies have been small, usually limited to hospitalized patients, and have not reported outcomes with respect to infection at different stages of pregnancy. Noga Fallach and colleagues at the Khan-Sakol-Maccabi Center for Research and Innovation used anonymized data captured by Maccabi Healthcare Services in Israel to match 2,753 women who were infected with COVID-19 during pregnancy with 2,753 women who were not infected. Their study was conducted from February 21, 2020 to July 2, 2021. Among infected women, 17.4% got COVID-19 in the first trimester, 34.2% in the second trimester and 48.4% in the third trimester.

Does COVID-19 Infection During Pregnancy is Associated with Pregnancy Loss?

COVID-19 infection in the first and second trimesters was not associated with increased risk of preterm birth. However, women infected in their third trimester were 2.76 times more likely to experience preterm birth (2.76, 95% CI 1.63-4.67) – while women infected after 34 weeks of gestation were over seven times more likely to experience preterm birth (7.10, 95% CI 2.44-20.61). There was a lower rate of waters breaking before labor began in infected women (39.1%) versus non-infected women (58.3%), and proportions of Caesarean sections and baby loss were similar in both groups.

Because of the increased risk of preterm birth in women infected during late pregnancy, the researchers suggest that during their third trimester, and particularly after 34 weeks of gestation, women should be advised to distance and wear masks to reduce risk of infection.


Dr. Tal Patalon, head of Kahn-Sagol-Maccabi (KSM), the research and innovation center of Maccabi Healthcare Services in Israel adds: “The results are encouraging and reassuring that COVID-19 infection during pregnancy is not associated with any type of pregnancy loss. However, it should be remembered that the research group tested the COVID pre-Delta variants, and does not refer to the dominant variant today, which is Omicron. We continue to conduct research to provide real-world data and knowledge to the public and decision-makers.”

Source: Eurekalert

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