Pregnant Women Found Infected With SARS-CoV-2

Women were positive for SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus at admission and did not display COVID-19 disease symptoms
pregnant woman

A new study focused on pregnant women in New York City, found a significant number were infected with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.

Published on April 13, 2020, in the NEJM, this study found 29/210 (13.8%) of all women were asymptomatic and positive.

Furthermore, 29 of the 33 women who were found to be positive for SARS-CoV-2 at admission (87.9%), did not display any symptoms of COVID-19 disease at presentation.

The good news is ‘there were no confirmed cases of COVID-19 detected in neonates upon initial testing on the first day of life.’ 

This new study’s findings indicate that expecting mothers living in a COVID-19 outbreak zone may not know they were infected with the new coronavirus.

Of the other 29 (67.4%) patients who presented with symptomatic COVID-19 infection, 3 women ultimately required antenatal admission for viral symptoms, and an additional patient represented six days postpartum after successful labor induction, with worsening respiratory status that required oxygen supplementation. 

Applying COVID-19 disease severity characteristics as described, 37 (86%) women possessed mild disease, four (9.3%) exhibited severe disease, and two (4.7%) developed a critical disease.

These percentages are similar to those described for non-pregnant adults with COVID-19 infections (about 80% mild, 15% severe, and 5% critical disease).

These researchers said ‘The obstetrical population presents a unique challenge during this pandemic since these patients have multiple interactions with the healthcare system and eventually most are admitted to the hospital for delivery.’

‘We first diagnosed a case of COVID-19 disease in an obstetrical patient (in NYC) on March 13, 2020.’

‘We previously reported our early experience with COVID-19 in pregnant women, including two initially asymptomatic women in whom symptoms developed and who tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.’

‘After these two cases were identified, New York-Presbyterian Allen Hospital and Columbia University Irving Medical Center implemented universal testing with nasopharyngeal swabs and a quantitative polymerase-chain-reaction test to detect SARS-CoV-2 infection in women who were admitted for delivery.’

'The potential benefits of a universal testing approach include the ability to use COVID-19 status to determine hospital isolation practices and bed assignments, inform neonatal care, and guide the use of personal protective equipment.'

'Access to such clinical data provides an important opportunity to protect mothers, babies, and health care teams during these challenging times,' concluded these researchers.

Precision Vaccinations publishes breaking news related to the COVID-19 disease pandemic.