Pregnancy as a risk factor for severe coronavirus disease 2019 using standardized clinical criteria

Megan C. Oakes, Annessa S. Kernberg, Ebony B. Carter, Megan E. Foeller, Arvind Palanisamy, Nandini Raghuraman, Jeannie C. Kelly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

BACKGROUND: As of November 18, 2020, more than 11 million people have been infected with coronavirus disease 2019 and almost 250,000 people have died from the disease in the United States, less than 1 year since its discovery. Although literature is beginning to emerge on pregnancy as a risk factor for severe coronavirus disease 2019, these studies are heterogeneous and use primary outcomes such as intensive care unit admission or hospitalization as surrogate markers that may subject analyses to misclassification bias in pregnant patients. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to determine the risk of severe coronavirus disease 2019 among pregnant women with symptomatic coronavirus disease 2019 compared with nonpregnant women using nonadmission-based, standardized clinical criteria for severe disease. STUDY DESIGN: This is a retrospective cohort study of women aged 13 to 45 years and diagnosed as having symptomatic coronavirus disease 2019 between May 28, 2020, and July 22, 2020. The primary outcome was severe coronavirus disease 2019 as defined by 2 sets of nonadmission-based, clinical criteria: the World Health Organization Ordinal Scale for Clinical Improvement and the Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia Emergency Response Epidemiology Team. Adjusted risk ratios were estimated using multivariable logistic regression analyses. RESULTS: Of 262 women aged 13 to 45 years with symptomatic coronavirus disease 2019, 22 (8.4%) were pregnant and 240 (91.6%) were nonpregnant. After adjusting for covariates potentially associated with the primary outcome, symptomatic pregnant women were at a significantly increased risk of severe coronavirus disease 2019 compared with nonpregnant women using both the World Health Organization Ordinal Scale for Clinical Improvement (adjusted relative risk, 3.59; 95% confidence interval, 1.49–7.01) and Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia Emergency Response Epidemiology Team (adjusted relative risk, 5.65; 95% confidence interval, 1.36–17.31) criteria. CONCLUSION: Pregnancy significantly increases the risk of severe coronavirus disease 2019 as defined by nonadmission-based, clinical criteria.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100319
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics & gynecology MFM
Volume3
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2021

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • SARS
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • coronavirus
  • pregnancy
  • severe COVID-19

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