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Asthma Exacerbations May Worsen Pregnancy Outcomes

Risk elevated for complications, adverse perinatal outcomes, early childhood respiratory disorders

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) — For women with asthma, asthma exacerbation (AE) during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk for pregnancy complications, adverse perinatal outcomes, and early childhood respiratory disorders, according to a study published online Nov. 26 in the European Respiratory Journal.

Kawsari Abdullah, Ph.D., from the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, and colleagues examined the short- and long-term intergenerational effect of AE in pregnant women with asthma in a population cohort study. Data were included for 103,424 singleton pregnancies in women with asthma.

The researchers found higher odds of preeclampsia and pregnancy-induced hypertension in association with AE in pregnant women (odds ratios, 1.30 [95 percent confidence interval (CI), 1.12 to 1.51] and 1.17 [95 percent CI, 1.02 to 1.33], respectively). In addition, AE in pregnant women correlated with babies having higher odds of low birth weight, being preterm, and having congenital malformations (odds ratios, 1.14 [95 percent CI, 1.00 to 1.31], 1.14 [95 percent CI, 1.01 to 1.29], and 1.21 [95 percent CI, 1.05 to 1.39], respectively). Increased risks for asthma and pneumonia during the first five years of life were seen for children born to women with AE during pregnancy (odds ratios, 1.23 [95 percent CI, 1.13 to 1.33] and 1.12 [95 percent CI, 1.03 to 1.22], respectively).

“Targeting women with asthma during pregnancy and ensuring appropriate asthma management and postpartum follow-up may help to reduce the risk of pregnancy complications, adverse perinatal outcomes and early childhood respiratory disorders,” the authors write.

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