Opioid Use Among HIV-Positive Pregnant Women and the Risk for Maternal–Fetal Complications

Ngoc H. Nguyen, PharmD; Erika N. Le, PharmD; Vanessa O. Mbah, PharmD; Emily B. Welsh, PharmD; Rana Daas, BS; Kiara K. Spooner, DrPH, MPH; Jason L. Salemi, PhD, MPH; Omonike A. Olaleye, PhD, MPH; Hamisu M. Salihu, MD, PhD


South Med J. 2020;113(6):292-297. 

In This Article


In all, although the trend of opioid use in HIV-positive pregnant women has been stable through the years, use or misuse of opioids in this population is still a point of concern. To mitigate HIV-opioid pregnancy-related complications, our findings underscore the need for routine opioid use screening, as well as an integration of community-based HIV support teams and clinical providers to ensure prompt and timely care coordination in this vulnerable population. Furthermore, the elevated risks of maternal and child health complications among HIV-positive pregnant women who use opioids call for the development of appropriate and tailored antenatal counseling and intervention programs, particularly in areas where the opioid epidemic has worsened during the last decade. With the increased maternal morbidity and mortality in the United States,[25] findings from this and future research can play a vital role in informing ongoing and new efforts aimed at decreasing maternal morbidity and mortality among women in the United States.