Clinical Professor, Obstetrics & Gynecology - Maternal Fetal Medicine
OBJECTIVE: To describe the prevalence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) antibody, evaluate current risk factors associated with HCV antibody positivity, and identify novel composite risk factors for identification of groups most likely to demonstrate HCV antibody seropositivity in an obstetric population from 2012 to 2015.METHODS: The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Maternal-Fetal Medicine Units Network initiated an observational study of mother-to-child transmission of HCV in 2012 that included offering HCV antibody screening to their entire obstetric population. Women presenting for prenatal care before 23 weeks of gestation without a known multifetal gestation were eligible. For each woman who was HCV antibody-positive, two women at similar gestational age who were HCV antibody-negative were identified and included for comparison. Risk factors were evaluated by patient interview and chart review. Women in the case group were identified to have a signal-to-cutoff value of at least 5 on the Abbott ARCHITECT platform. RNA status was evaluated for women in the case group.RESULTS: Of 106,842 women screened for the HCV antibody, 254 had positive results. The HCV antibody seroprevalence rate was 2.4 cases per 1,000 women (95% CI 2.1-2.7). One hundred thirty-one women in the case group and 251 women in the control group were included in the case-control analysis. Factors associated with HCV antibody positivity included injection drug use (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 22.9, 95% CI 8.2-64.0), blood transfusion (aOR 3.7, 95% CI 1.3-10.4), having a partner with HCV (aOR 6.3, 95% CI 1.8-22.6), more than three lifetime sexual partners (aOR 5.3, 95% CI 1.4-19.8), and smoking (aOR 2.4, 95% CI 1.2-4.6). A composite of any of these potential risk factors provided the highest sensitivity for detecting HCV antibody (75/82 cases, 91%).CONCLUSION: In this cohort, the seroprevalence of HCV antibody was low, and the current risk factors for HCV screening were not identified. These findings may be useful in defining new strategies for identifying mothers with the HCV antibody and the neonates susceptible to maternal transmission of HCV.CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01959321.
View details for DOI 10.1097/AOG.0000000000003754
View details for PubMedID 32168224
BACKGROUND: Although induction of labor (IOL) of low-risk nulliparous women at 39 weeks reduces the risk of cesarean delivery compared with expectant management, concern regarding more frequent use of labor induction remains given that this intervention historically has been thought to incur greater resource utilization.OBJECTIVE: To determine whether planned elective labor induction at 39 weeks among low-risk nulliparous women, compared with expectant management, was associated with differences in health care resource utilization from the time of randomization through 8 weeks postpartum.STUDY DESIGN: This is a planned secondary analysis of a multi-center randomized trial in which low-risk nulliparous women were assigned to IOL at 39 weeks or expectant management. We assessed resource utilization post-randomization in three time periods: antepartum (AP), delivery admission, and discharge through 8 weeks postpartum (PP).RESULTS: Of 6096 women with data available, those in the IOL group (n = 3059) were significantly less likely in the AP period after randomization to have at least one ambulatory visit for routine prenatal care (32.4% vs. 68.4%), unanticipated care (0.5% vs. 2.6%), or urgent care (16.2% vs. 44.3%), or at least one antepartum hospitalization (0.8% vs. 2.2%, p<0.001 for all). They also had fewer tests (e.g., sonograms, blood tests) and treatments (e.g., antibiotics, intravenous hydration) prior to delivery. During the delivery admission, women in the IOL group spent a longer time in labor and delivery (median: 0.83 vs. 0.57 days), but both women (p=0.002) and their neonates (p<0.001) had shorter postpartum stays. Women and neonates in both groups had similar frequencies of PP urgent care and hospital readmissions (p>0.05 for all).CONCLUSIONS: Women randomized to IOL had longer durations in labor and delivery, but significantly fewer AP visits, tests, and treatments, and shorter maternal and neonatal hospital durations post-delivery. These results demonstrate that the health outcome advantages associated with IOL are gained without incurring uniformly greater health care resource use.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.ajog.2020.01.002
View details for PubMedID 31930993
OBJECTIVE: Our primary objective was to identify risk factors for maternal readmission with sepsis. Our secondary objectives were to (1) assess diagnoses and infecting organisms at readmission and (2) compare early (<6 weeks) and late (6 weeks to 9 months postpartum) maternal readmission with sepsis.STUDY DESIGN: We identified our cohort using linked hospital discharge data and birth certificates for California deliveries from 2008 to 2011. Consistent with the 2016 sepsis classification, we defined sepsis as septicemia plus acute organ dysfunction. We compared women with early or late readmission with sepsis to women without readmission with sepsis.RESULTS: Among 1,880,264 women, 494 (0.03%) were readmitted with sepsis, 61% after 6 weeks. Risk factors for readmission with sepsis included preterm birth, hemorrhage, obesity, government-provided insurance, and primary cesarean. For both early and late sepsis readmissions, the most common diagnoses were urinary tract infection and pyelonephritis, and the most frequently identified infecting organism was gram-negative bacteria. Women with early compared with late readmission with sepsis shared similar obstetric characteristics.CONCLUSION: Maternal risk factors for both early and late readmission with sepsis included demographic characteristics, cesarean, hemorrhage, and preterm birth. Risks for sepsis after delivery persist beyond the traditional postpartum period of 6 weeks.
View details for DOI 10.1055/s-0039-1696721
View details for PubMedID 31529451
OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to evaluate the association between clinical and examination features at admission and late preterm birth.STUDY DESIGN: The present study is a secondary analysis of a randomized trial of singleton pregnancies at 340/7 to 365/7 weeks' gestation. We included women in spontaneous preterm labor with intact membranes and compared them by gestational age at delivery (preterm vs. term). We calculated a statistical cut-point optimizing the sensitivity and specificity of initial cervical dilation and effacement at predicting preterm birth and used multivariable regression to identify factors associated with late preterm delivery.RESULTS: A total of 431 out of 732 (59%) women delivered preterm. Cervical dilation?4cm was 60% sensitive and 68% specific for late preterm birth. Cervical effacement?75% was 59% sensitive and 65% specific for late preterm birth. Earlier gestational age at randomization, nulliparity, and fetal malpresentation were associated with late preterm birth. The final regression model including clinical and examination features significantly improved late preterm birth prediction (81% sensitivity, 48% specificity, area under the curve=0.72, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.68-0.75, and p-value<0.01).CONCLUSION: Four in 10 women in late-preterm labor subsequently delivered at term. Combination of examination and clinical features (including parity and gestational age) improved late-preterm birth prediction.
View details for DOI 10.1055/s-0039-1696641
View details for PubMedID 31529452
OBJECTIVE: To determine the rate, maternal characteristics, timing, and indicators of severe maternal morbidity (SMM) that occurs at postpartum readmission.STUDY DESIGN: Women with a birth in California during 2008-2012 were included in the analysis. Readmissions up to 42 days after delivery were investigated. SMM was defined as presence of any of the 21 indicators defined by ICD-9 codes.RESULTS: Among 2,413,943 women with a birth, SMM at readmission occurred in 4229 women. Of all SMM, 12.1% occurred at readmission. Over half (53.5%) of the readmissions with SMM occurred within the first week after delivery hospitalization. The most common indicators of SMM were blood transfusion, sepsis, and pulmonary edema/acute heart failure.CONCLUSION: Twelve percent of SMM was identified at readmission with the majority occurring within 1 week after discharge from delivery hospitalization. Because early readmission may reflect lack of discharge readiness, there may be opportunities to improve care.
View details for DOI 10.1038/s41372-019-0481-z
View details for PubMedID 31462721
OBJECTIVE: To assess the prevalence and risk of severe maternal morbidity among delivery hospitalization for stillbirth compared with live birth deliveries.METHODS: Using data from the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development in California, we performed a population-based cross-sectional study of 6,459,842 deliveries between 1999 and 2011. We identified severe maternal morbidity using an algorithm comprising diagnoses and procedures developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and used log-binomial regression models to examine the relative risk (RR) of severe maternal morbidity for stillbirth compared with live birth deliveries, adjusting for maternal demographic, medical, and obstetric characteristics. We also examined severe maternal morbidity prevalence by cause of fetal death among stillbirth deliveries.RESULTS: The prevalence of severe maternal morbidity for stillbirth and live birth was 578 and 99 cases per 10,000 deliveries, respectively. After adjusting for maternal demographic, medical, and obstetric characteristics, the risk of severe maternal morbidity among stillbirth deliveries was more than fourfold higher (adjusted RR 4.77; 95% CI 4.53-5.02) compared with live birth deliveries. The severe maternal morbidity prevalence was highest among stillbirths caused by hypertensive disorders and placental conditions (24 and 19 cases/100 deliveries, respectively), and lowest among stillbirths caused by fetal malformations or genetic abnormalities (1 case per 100 deliveries).CONCLUSION: Women who have stillbirths are at substantially higher risk for severe maternal morbidity than women who have live births, regardless of cause of fetal death. The prevalence of severe maternal morbidity varies by cause of fetal death.
View details for DOI 10.1097/AOG.0000000000003370
View details for PubMedID 31306335
Importance: Administration of corticosteroids to women at high risk for delivery in the late preterm period (34-36 weeks' gestation) improves short-term neonatal outcomes. The cost implications of this intervention are not known.Objective: To compare the cost-effectiveness of treatment with antenatal corticosteroids with no treatment for women at risk for late preterm delivery.Design, Setting, and Participants: This secondary analysis of the Antenatal Late Preterm Steroids trial, a multicenter randomized clinical trial of antenatal corticosteroids vs placebo in women at risk for late preterm delivery conducted from October 30, 2010, to February 27, 2015. took a third-party payer perspective. Maternal costs were based on Medicaid rates and included those of betamethasone, as well as the outpatient visits or inpatient stay required to administer betamethasone. All direct medical costs for newborn care were included. For infants admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit, comprehensive daily costs were stratified by the acuity of respiratory illness. For infants admitted to the regular newborn nursery, nationally representative cost estimates from the literature were used. Effectiveness was measured as the proportion of infants without the primary outcome of the study: a composite of treatment in the first 72 hours of continuous positive airway pressure or high-flow nasal cannula for 2 hours or more, supplemental oxygen with a fraction of inspired oxygen of 30% or more for 4 hours or more, and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation or mechanical ventilation. This secondary analysis was initially started in June 2016 and revision of the analysis began in May 2017.Exposures: Bethamethasone treatment.Main Outcomes and Measures: Incremental cost-effectiveness ratio.Results: Costs were determined for 1426 mother-infant pairs in the betamethasone group (mean [SD] maternal age, 28.6 [6.3] years; 827 [58.0%] white) and 1395 mother-infant pairs in the placebo group (mean [SD] maternal age, 27.9 [6.2] years; 794 [56.9%] white). Treatment with betamethasone was associated with a total mean (SD) woman-infant-pair cost of $4681 ($5798), which was significantly less than the mean (SD) amount of $5379 ($8422) for women and infants in the placebo group (difference, $698; 95% CI, $186-$1257; P=.02). The Antenatal Late Preterm Steroids trial determined that betamethasone use is effective: respiratory morbidity deceased by 2.9% (95% CI, -0.5% to -5.4%). Thus, the cost-effectiveness ratio was -23 986. Inspection of the bootstrap replications confirmed that treatment was the dominant strategy in 5000 samples (98.8%). Sensitivity analyses showed that these results held under most assumptions.Conclusions and Relevance: The findings suggest that antenatal betamethasone treatment is associated with a statistically significant decrease in health care costs and with improved outcomes; thus, this treatment may be an economically desirable strategy.
View details for PubMedID 30855640
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Sepsis is a leading cause of severe maternal morbidity and maternal death. As pregnancy-related sepsis can be difficult to recognize, clinicians should maintain a low threshold for early evaluation and treatment.RECENT FINDINGS: Definitions and treatment guidelines for maternal sepsis were recently revised in 2016 and 2017 by the Surviving Sepsis Campaign and WHO. Multiple clinical decision tools have been created to aid clinicians in early recognition and risk prediction for sepsis in obstetric populations, but currently, an optimal screening tool does not exist. Early recognition and urgent treatment is paramount for patient survival. Antibiotics should be started within 1?h and fluid resuscitation should be initiated if sepsis-induced hypoperfusion is present. Care should be escalated to appropriate settings and source control provided.SUMMARY: Obstetricians have a heightened understanding of the physiologic changes in pregnancy and play a vital role in coordinating patient care and improving outcomes. The recent 2016 and 2017 revisions of definitions for maternal sepsis and treatment should be incorporated into clinical practice.
View details for PubMedID 30789841
OBJECTIVE: To identify single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with clinical chorioamnionitis among preterm infants.STUDY DESIGN: We reanalyzed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) from preterm newborns at less than 30 weeks' gestation. Cases and control definitions were determined using administrative records. There were 213 clinical chorioamnionitis cases and 707 clinically uninfected controls. We compared demographic and clinical outcomes of cases and controls. We performed a GWAS and compared the distribution of SNPs from the background genes and from the immunome genes. We used a Wilcoxon's rank-sum test to compare the SNPs normalized odds ratio and used odds ratios and p-values to determine candidate genes.RESULTS: Infants affected by clinical chorioamnionitis were more likely to have periventricular leukomalacia, high-grade retinopathy, and high-grade intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH). Although a GWAS did not identify SNPs associated with clinical chorioamnionitis at the genome-wide significance level, a direct test on the exonic variants in the human immunome revealed their significant increase of risk in clinical chorioamnionitis.CONCLUSION: Among very preterm infants, clinical chorioamnionitis was associated with periventricular leukomalacia, high-grade retinopathy, and IVH. Our analysis of variants in the human immunome indicates an association with clinical chorioamnionitis in very preterm pregnancies.
View details for PubMedID 30674050
Motivation: Multiple biological clocks govern a healthy pregnancy. These biological mechanisms produce immunologic, metabolomic, proteomic, genomic and microbiomic adaptations during the course of pregnancy. Modeling the chronology of these adaptations during full-term pregnancy provides the frameworks for future studies examining deviations implicated in pregnancy-related pathologies including preterm birth and preeclampsia.Results: We performed a multiomics analysis of 51 samples from 17 pregnant women, delivering at term. The datasets included measurements from the immunome, transcriptome, microbiome, proteome and metabolome of samples obtained simultaneously from the same patients. Multivariate predictive modeling using the Elastic Net (EN) algorithm was used to measure the ability of each dataset to predict gestational age. Using stacked generalization, these datasets were combined into a single model. This model not only significantly increased predictive power by combining all datasets, but also revealed novel interactions between different biological modalities. Future work includes expansion of the cohort to preterm-enriched populations and in vivo analysis of immune-modulating interventions based on the mechanisms identified.Availability and implementation: Datasets and scripts for reproduction of results are available through: https://nalab.stanford.edu/multiomics-pregnancy/.Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
View details for PubMedID 30561547
Preeclampsia is one of the most severe pregnancy complications and a leading cause of maternal death. However, early diagnosis of preeclampsia remains a clinical challenge. Alterations in the normal immune adaptations necessary for the maintenance of a healthy pregnancy are central features of preeclampsia. However, prior analyses primarily focused on the static assessment of select immune cell subsets have provided limited information for the prediction of preeclampsia. Here, we used a high-dimensional mass cytometry immunoassay to characterize the dynamic changes of over 370 immune cell features (including cell distribution and functional responses) in maternal blood during healthy and preeclamptic pregnancies. We found a set of eight cell-specific immune features that accurately identified patients well before the clinical diagnosis of preeclampsia (median area under the curve (AUC) 0.91, interquartile range [0.82-0.92]). Several features recapitulated previously known immune dysfunctions in preeclampsia, such as elevated pro-inflammatory innate immune responses early in pregnancy and impaired regulatory T (Treg) cell signaling. The analysis revealed additional novel immune responses that were strongly associated with, and preceded the onset of preeclampsia, notably abnormal STAT5ab signaling dynamics in CD4+T cell subsets (AUC 0.92, p = 8.0E-5). These results provide a global readout of the dynamics of the maternal immune system early in pregnancy and lay the groundwork for identifying clinically-relevant immune dysfunctions for the prediction and prevention of preeclampsia.
View details for DOI 10.3389/fimmu.2019.01305
View details for PubMedID 31263463
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6584811
Based upon our recent insights into the determinants of preterm birth, which is the leading cause of death in children under five years of age worldwide, we describe potential analytic frameworks that provides both a common understanding and, ultimately the basis for effective, ameliorative action. Our research on preterm birth serves as an example that the framing of any human health condition is a result of complex interactions between the genome and the exposome. New discoveries of the basic biology of pregnancy, such as the complex immunological and signaling processes that dictate the health and length of gestation, have revealed a complexity in the interactions (current and ancestral) between genetic and environmental forces. Understanding of these relationships may help reduce disparities in preterm birth and guide productive research endeavors and ultimately, effective clinical and public health interventions.
View details for PubMedID 30560947
Changes in the make-up of the Supreme Court make an overturn of the Roe v Wade decision a realistic possibility. In order to mitigate any adverse health consequences that could result from a change in the law, all stakeholders in women's health have to start to plan for that contingency. These stakeholders include physicians, nurse midwives, nurses, their professional organizations, health advocacy groups, health policy experts, and legislators. Among the tasks for physicians and their professional organization, we include education about the management of women injured by unsafe abortions, post residency training for physicians with reduced access to residency training in abortion, and planning for the management of medically complicated pregnancies that are often currently terminated (e.g. Eisenmenger's syndrome). In this piece we argue for preparation for a potential post-Roe world.
View details for PubMedID 30471257
OBJECTIVE: To compare fetal heart rate (FHR) patterns during the last hour of labor between small-for-gestational-age (SGA; birth weight less than the 10th percentile for gestational age) and appropriate-for-gestational-age (AGA; birth weight at the 10-90th percentile) neonates at 36 weeks of gestation or greater. We also compared the rate of cesarean delivery and composite neonatal morbidity among SGA and AGA newborns.METHODS: This is a secondary analysis of a randomized trial of intrapartum fetal electrocardiographic ST-segment analysis. We excluded women with chorioamnionitis, insufficient duration of FHR tracing in the hour before delivery, and anomalous newborns. Fetal heart rate patterns were categorized by computerized pattern recognition software (PeriCALM Patterns). Composite neonatal morbidity was defined as any of the following: intrapartum fetal death, Apgar score 3 or less at 5 minutes, cord artery pH 7.05 or less, base deficit 12 mmol/L or greater, neonatal seizure, intubation at delivery, neonatal encephalopathy, and neonatal death. Logistic regression was used to evaluate the association between FHR patterns and SGA adjusted for magnesium sulfate exposure and stage of labor.RESULTS: Of the 11,108 women randomized, 85% (n=9,402) met inclusion criteria, of whom 9% were SGA. In the last hour, the likelihood of accelerations was significantly lower among SGA than AGA neonates (72.4% vs 66.8%; P=.001). Variable decelerations lasting greater than 60 seconds, with depth greater than 60 beats per minute (bpm) or nadir less than 60 bpm, were significantly more common with SGA than AGA (all P<.001). The rate of late decelerations, prolonged decelerations, or bradycardia were similar between SGA and AGA (all P>.05). Cesarean delivery for fetal indications was significantly more common with SGA (7.0%) than AGA (4.0%; P<.001). The composite neonatal morbidity was 1.4% among SGA and 1.0% among AGA (odds ratio 1.40, 95% CI 0.74-2.64).CONCLUSION: Although the FHR patterns in the last hour of labor differ among SGA and AGA neonates, as does the rate of cesarean delivery, the composite neonatal morbidity was similar.
View details for PubMedID 30204687
There is a paucity of research on the contribution of placental inflammation to severe retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).A retrospective cohort study (n = 1217) was conducted of infants screened for ROP (2006-2016). The outcomes of the study were severe ROP (type 1 or type 2 ROP) and low grade ROP. We categorized the placental pathology as the presence of (i) maternal plus fetal inflammatory response, (ii) maternal inflammatory response only, (iii) fetal inflammatory response only and, (iv) no evidence of a maternal or fetal inflammatory response. The data were analyzed using univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses (P < .05).In this cohort, the number of infants with the maternal plus fetal inflammatory response, the maternal inflammatory response only, the fetal inflammatory response only, and no maternal or fetal inflammatory response was 305 (25%), 82 (7%), 8 (1%), and 822 (67%), respectively. Adjusted for covariates, the maternal plus fetal inflammatory response was a significant risk factor for severe ROP (AOR = 2.6, 95% CI 1.1-5.9, P = .03). None of the categories of placental inflammation were significantly associated with low grade ROP.Placental pathology distinguished by the maternal plus fetal inflammatory response was a significant risk factor for severe ROP. Our study supports a link between intrauterine inflammatory events and the subsequent development of severe ROP.
View details for PubMedID 29797537
View details for Web of Science ID 000423616600271
Background The perinatal and maternal consequences of induction of labor at 39 weeks among low-risk nulliparous women are uncertain. Methods In this multicenter trial, we randomly assigned low-risk nulliparous women who were at 38 weeks 0 days to 38 weeks 6 days of gestation to labor induction at 39 weeks 0 days to 39 weeks 4 days or to expectant management. The primary outcome was a composite of perinatal death or severe neonatal complications; the principal secondary outcome was cesarean delivery. Results A total of 3062 women were assigned to labor induction, and 3044 were assigned to expectant management. The primary outcome occurred in 4.3% of neonates in the induction group and in 5.4% in the expectant-management group (relative risk, 0.80; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.64 to 1.00). The frequency of cesarean delivery was significantly lower in the induction group than in the expectant-management group (18.6% vs. 22.2%; relative risk, 0.84; 95% CI, 0.76 to 0.93). Conclusions Induction of labor at 39 weeks in low-risk nulliparous women did not result in a significantly lower frequency of a composite adverse perinatal outcome, but it did result in a significantly lower frequency of cesarean delivery. (Funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; ARRIVE ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01990612 .).
View details for PubMedID 30089070
View details for Web of Science ID 000416950700088
The maintenance of pregnancy relies on finely tuned immune adaptations. We demonstrate that these adaptations are precisely timed, reflecting an immune clock of pregnancy in women delivering at term. Using mass cytometry, the abundance and functional responses of all major immune cell subsets were quantified in serial blood samples collected throughout pregnancy. Cell signaling-based Elastic Net, a regularized regression method adapted from the elastic net algorithm, was developed to infer and prospectively validate a predictive model of interrelated immune events that accurately captures the chronology of pregnancy. Model components highlighted existing knowledge and revealed previously unreported biology, including a critical role for the interleukin-2-dependent STAT5ab signaling pathway in modulating T cell function during pregnancy. These findings unravel the precise timing of immunological events occurring during a term pregnancy and provide the analytical framework to identify immunological deviations implicated in pregnancy-related pathologies.
View details for PubMedID 28864494
View details for Web of Science ID 000414256401118
Retinopathy of prematurity is an adverse outcome of preterm birth and is a leading cause of childhood blindness. The relationship between the subtypes of preterm birth with retinopathy of prematurity is understudied.To investigate whether there is a difference in the incidence of type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity in infants with preterm birth resulting from spontaneous preterm labor, a medical indication of preterm birth, or preterm premature rupture of the membranes.A retrospective cohort study was conducted of 827 infants screened for retinopathy of prematurity who were delivered at a single tertiary care center in Colorado. All infants fulfilled the American Academy of Pediatrics 2013 screening criteria for retinopathy of prematurity defined as "infants with a birth weight of ?1500 g or gestational age of 30 weeks or less (as defined by the attending neonatologist) and selected infants with a birth weight between 1500 and 2000 g or gestational age of >30 weeks with an unstable clinical course, including those requiring cardiorespiratory support and who are believed by their attending pediatrician or neonatologist to be at high risk for retinopathy of prematurity." Two independent reviewers masked to retinopathy of prematurity outcomes determined whether preterm birth resulted from spontaneous preterm labor, medical indication of preterm birth, or preterm premature rupture of the membranes. Discrepancies were resolved by a third reviewer. Data were analyzed with univariate and multivariable logistic regression.In our cohort, the frequency of preterm birth resulting from spontaneous preterm labor, medical indication of preterm birth, or preterm premature rupture of the membranes was 34%, 40%, and 26%, respectively. The mean gestational age (weeks, days) ± SD (range) in the cohort and across the preterm birth subtypes was as follows: entire cohort, 28 weeks, 6 days ± 2 weeks, 3 days (23 weeks, 3 days - 36 weeks, 4 days); spontaneous preterm labor, 28 weeks 1 day ± 2 weeks, 3 days (23 weeks, 3 days - 33 weeks, 4 days); medical indication of preterm birth, 29 weeks, 1 day ± 2 weeks, 2 days (24-36 weeks, 4 days); preterm premature rupture of the membranes, 28 weeks, 4 days ± 2 weeks, 1 day (24-33 weeks, 1 day). Among infants with type 1, type 2, or no retinopathy of prematurity, the incidence of type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity in births from spontaneous preterm labor, medical indication of preterm birth, and preterm premature rupture of the membranes was 37 of 218 (17%), 27 of 272 (10%), and 10 of 164 (6%), respectively. Adjusted for gestational age, birth weight, and multiparity and compared with the preterm premature rupture of the membranes group, the odds ratios of spontaneous preterm labor and medical indication of preterm birth for type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity were 6.1 (95% confidence interval, 1.8 to 20, P = .003) and 5.5 (95% confidence interval, 1.4 to 21, P = .01), respectively. Among neonates born after preterm premature rupture of the membranes, the probability of developing type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity was greatest in infants with rupture of membrane duration of up to 24 hours. After 24 hours, the probability of developing type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity declined. The odds of developing type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity was 9.0 (95% confidence interval 2.3 to 34, P = .002) in infants who had preterm premature rupture of the membranes ? 24 hours compared with infants who had preterm premature rupture of the membranes > 24 hours.Type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity are adverse ocular outcomes linked with not only lower gestational age and birth weight at delivery but also with events in the intrauterine environment that trigger a preterm birth. The reduced incidence of type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity in the preterm premature rupture of the membranes group compared with other causes of preterm birth may be related to the perinatal therapies associated with preterm premature rupture of the membranes (such as corticosteroids, antibiotics, maternal-fetal surveillance), which may have an inhibitory effect on the development of retinopathy of prematurity. We suggest that the physiologic events that predispose infants to type 1 or type 2 retinopathy of prematurity begin before delivery.
View details for PubMedID 28545834
Early detection of maladaptive processes underlying pregnancy-related pathologies is desirable, as it will enable targeted interventions ahead of clinical manifestations. The quantitative analysis of plasma proteins features prominently among molecular approaches used to detect deviations from normal pregnancy. However, derivation of proteomic signatures sufficiently predictive of pregnancy-related outcomes has been challenging. An important obstacle hindering such efforts were limitations in assay technology, which prevented the broad examination of the plasma proteome.The recent availability of a highly-multiplexed platform affording the simultaneous measurement of 1,310 plasma proteins opens the door for a more explorative approach. The major aim of this study was to examine whether analysis of plasma collected during gestation of term pregnancy would allow identifying a set of proteins that tightly track gestational age. Establishing precisely-timed plasma proteomic changes during term pregnancy is a critical step in identifying deviations from regular patterns due to fetal and maternal maladaptations. A second aim was to gain insight into functional attributes of identified proteins, and link such attributes to relevant immunological changes.Pregnant women participated in this longitudinal study. In two subsequent subsets of 21 (training cohort) and 10 (validation cohort) women, specific blood specimens were collected during the first (7-14 wks), second (15-20 wks), and third (24-32 wks) trimesters, and 6 wks post-partum for analysis with a highly-multiplexed aptamer-based platform. An elastic net algorithm was applied to infer a proteomic model predicting gestational age. A bootstrapping procedure and piece-wise regression analysis was used to extract the minimum number of proteins required for predicting gestational age without compromising predictive power. Gene ontology analysis was applied to infer enrichment of molecular functions among proteins included in the proteomic model. Changes in abundance of proteins with such functions were linked to immune features predictive of gestational age at the time of sampling in pregnancies delivering at term.An independently validated model consisting of 74 proteins strongly predicted gestational age (p = 3.8x10-14, R = 0.97). The model could be reduced to eight proteins without losing its predictive power (p = 1.7x10-3, R = 0.91). The three top ranked proteins were glypican 3, chorionic somatomammotropin hormone, and granulins. Proteins activating the Janus kinase (JAK) and signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) pathway were enriched in the proteomic model, chorionic somatomammotropin hormone being the top ranked protein. Abundance of chorionic somatomammotropin hormone strongly correlated with STAT5 signaling activity in CD4 T cells, the endogenous cell-signaling event most predictive of gestational age.Results indicate that precisely timed changes in the plasma proteome during term pregnancy mirror a "proteomic clock". Importantly, the combined use of several plasma proteins was required for accurate prediction. The exciting promise of such a "clock" is that deviations from its regular chronological profile may assist in the early diagnoses of pregnancy-relate pathologies and point to underlying pathophysiology. Functional analysis of the proteomic model generated the novel hypothesis that somatomammotropin hormone may critically regulate T-cell function during pregnancy.
View details for PubMedID 29277631
Infants who are born at 34 to 36 weeks of gestation (late preterm) are at greater risk for adverse respiratory and other outcomes than those born at 37 weeks of gestation or later. It is not known whether betamethasone administered to women at risk for late preterm delivery decreases the risks of neonatal morbidities.We conducted a multicenter, randomized trial involving women with a singleton pregnancy at 34 weeks 0 days to 36 weeks 5 days of gestation who were at high risk for delivery during the late preterm period (up to 36 weeks 6 days). The participants were assigned to receive two injections of betamethasone or matching placebo 24 hours apart. The primary outcome was a neonatal composite of treatment in the first 72 hours (the use of continuous positive airway pressure or high-flow nasal cannula for at least 2 hours, supplemental oxygen with a fraction of inspired oxygen of at least 0.30 for at least 4 hours, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, or mechanical ventilation) or stillbirth or neonatal death within 72 hours after delivery.The primary outcome occurred in 165 of 1427 infants (11.6%) in the betamethasone group and 202 of 1400 (14.4%) in the placebo group (relative risk in the betamethasone group, 0.80; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.66 to 0.97; P=0.02). Severe respiratory complications, transient tachypnea of the newborn, surfactant use, and bronchopulmonary dysplasia also occurred significantly less frequently in the betamethasone group. There were no significant between-group differences in the incidence of chorioamnionitis or neonatal sepsis. Neonatal hypoglycemia was more common in the betamethasone group than in the placebo group (24.0% vs. 15.0%; relative risk, 1.60; 95% CI, 1.37 to 1.87; P<0.001).Administration of betamethasone to women at risk for late preterm delivery significantly reduced the rate of neonatal respiratory complications. (Funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01222247.).
View details for PubMedID 26842679
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4823164
It is unclear whether using fetal electrocardiographic (ECG) ST-segment analysis as an adjunct to conventional intrapartum electronic fetal heart-rate monitoring modifies intrapartum and neonatal outcomes.We performed a multicenter trial in which women with a singleton fetus who were attempting vaginal delivery at more than 36 weeks of gestation and who had cervical dilation of 2 to 7 cm were randomly assigned to "open" or "masked" monitoring with fetal ST-segment analysis. The masked system functioned as a normal fetal heart-rate monitor. The open system displayed additional information for use when uncertain fetal heart-rate patterns were detected. The primary outcome was a composite of intrapartum fetal death, neonatal death, an Apgar score of 3 or less at 5 minutes, neonatal seizure, an umbilical-artery blood pH of 7.05 or less with a base deficit of 12 mmol per liter or more, intubation for ventilation at delivery, or neonatal encephalopathy.A total of 11,108 patients underwent randomization; 5532 were assigned to the open group, and 5576 to the masked group. The primary outcome occurred in 52 fetuses or neonates of women in the open group (0.9%) and 40 fetuses or neonates of women in the masked group (0.7%) (relative risk, 1.31; 95% confidence interval, 0.87 to 1.98; P=0.20). Among the individual components of the primary outcome, only the frequency of a 5-minute Apgar score of 3 or less differed significantly between neonates of women in the open group and those in the masked group (0.3% vs. 0.1%, P=0.02). There were no significant between-group differences in the rate of cesarean delivery (16.9% and 16.2%, respectively; P=0.30) or any operative delivery (22.8% and 22.0%, respectively; P=0.31). Adverse events were rare and occurred with similar frequency in the two groups.Fetal ECG ST-segment analysis used as an adjunct to conventional intrapartum electronic fetal heart-rate monitoring did not improve perinatal outcomes or decrease operative-delivery rates. (Funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and Neoventa Medical; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01131260.).
View details for DOI 10.1056/NEJMoa1500600
View details for PubMedID 26267623