Pregnancy Outcomes in Women with Cystic Fibrosis in the UK

Pavankumar Kamat

July 23, 2020

A new population-based study suggests that pregnancy outcomes are generally favourable in women with cystic fibrosis (CF) in the UK. The findings were published in the journal BJOG.

A population-based descriptive study analysed data for pregnant women with CF who sought antenatal care at a UK obstetric unit (from March 2015 to February 2017) as per the methodology of the UK Obstetric Surveillance System. Several maternal and neonatal outcomes were assessed. The incidence of CF in pregnancy was also determined using published national statistics for maternity.

Based on 1,501,822 maternities recorded across the UK during the study period, the incidence of CF in pregnancy was estimated to be 4.4 (95% CI, 3.3-5.5) per 100,000 UK maternities. Seventy-one pregnancies were reported during the 2-year period at the obstetric unit. One early miscarriage and four terminations of pregnancy were recorded. The remaining 66 pregnancies that included three sets of twins resulted in 69 live births. There were no maternal deaths. One infant died following spontaneous pre-term labour at 29 weeks.

Better maternal lung function was associated with fewer preterm deliveries; 100 per cent of babies born to women with forced expiratory volume in one minute (FEV1) <50% predicted were preterm vs 20% of babies born to women with FEV1 90-100% predicted. Similarly, birthweight centiles improved with maternal lung function; mean centile of 62.5% with FEV1 40-50% predicted vs 80.8% with FEV1 90-100% predicted.

"Women with poorer baseline lung function have a higher chance of a preterm delivery and a smaller baby but successful pregnancy is possible even in those women with FEV1 <60% predicted," the authors concluded.

Ashcroft A, Chapman SJ, Mackillop L. The outcome of pregnancy in women with cystic fibrosis: a UK population based descriptive study. BJOG. 2020 Jul 19 [Epub ahead of print]. doi: 10.1111/1471-0528.16423. PMID: 32683738 Abstract.  

This article originally appeared on Univadis, part of the Medscape Professional Network.


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