Vaginal carriage of Haemophilus influenzae in a non-pregnant reproductive-age population
BACKGROUND:Haemophilus influenzae (Hi) is an emerging cause of early onset neonatal sepsis, but mechanisms of transmission are not well understood. We aimed to determine the prevalence of vaginal carriage of Hi in reproductive age women and to examine behavioral and demographic characteristics associated with its carriage. METHODS:) value < 35 were defined as positive. Sanger sequencing confirmed the presence of hpd. Behavioral and demographic characteristics associated with vaginal carriage of Hi were examined. RESULTS:415 samples were available. 315 (75.9%) had sufficient bacterial DNA and were included. 14 (4.4%) were positive for hpd. There were no demographic or behavioral differences between the women with Hi vaginal carriage and those without. There was no difference in history of bacterial vaginosis, vaginal microbiome community state type, or presence of Group B Streptococcus in women with and without vaginal carriage of Hi. CONCLUSION:Hi was present in vaginal lavage specimens of 4.4% of this cohort. Hi presence was unrelated to clinical or demographic characteristics, though the relatively small number of positive samples may have limited power to detect such differences.
Cell-free DNA screening for trisomy 21 in twin pregnancy: a large multicenter cohort study
BACKGROUND:Analysis of cell-free DNA from maternal blood provides effective screening for trisomy 21 in singleton pregnancies. Data on cell-free DNA screening in twin gestations are promising although limited. In previous twin studies, cell-free DNA screening was primarily performed in the second trimester and many studies did not report chorionicity. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to evaluate the screening performance of cell-free DNA for trisomy 21 in twin pregnancies in a large, diverse cohort. A secondary aim was to evaluate screening performance for trisomy 18 and trisomy 13. STUDY DESIGN/METHODS:This was a retrospective cohort study of twin pregnancies from 17 centers for which cell-free DNA screening was performed from December 2011 to February 2020 by one laboratory using massively parallel sequencing technology. Medical record review was conducted for all newborns and data on the birth outcome, the presence of any congenital abnormalities, phenotypic appearance at birth, and any chromosomal testing that was undertaken in the antenatal or postnatal period were extracted. Cases with a possible fetal chromosomal abnormality with no genetic test results were reviewed by a committee of maternal-fetal medicine geneticists. Cases with a vanishing twin and inadequate follow-up information were excluded. A minimum of 35 confirmed cases of trisomy 21 was required to capture a sensitivity of at least 90% with a prevalence of at least 1.9% with 80% power. Test characteristics were calculated for each outcome. RESULTS:A total of 1764 samples were sent for twin cell-free DNA screening. Of those, 78 cases with a vanishing twin and 239 cases with inadequate follow-up were excluded, leaving a total of 1447 cases for inclusion in the analysis. The median maternal age was 35 years and the median gestational age at cell-free DNA testing was 12.3 weeks. In total, 81% of the twins were dichorionic. The median fetal fraction was 12.4%. Trisomy 21 was detected in 41 of 42 pregnancies, yielding a detection rate of 97.6% (95% confidence interval, 83.8-99.7). There was 1 false negative and no false positive cases. Trisomy 21 was detected in 38 out of 39 dichorionic twin pregnancies, yielding a detection rate of 97.4% (95% confidence interval, 82.6-99.7). Trisomy 18 was detected in 10 of the 10 affected pregnancies. There was 1 false positive case. Trisomy 13 was detected in 4 of the 5 cases, yielding a detection rate of 80% (95% confidence interval, 11.1-99.2). There was one false negative and no false positive cases. The nonreportable rate was low at 3.9 %. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Cell-free DNA testing is effective in screening for trisomy 21 in twin gestations from the first trimester of pregnancy. Detection of trisomy 21 was high in dichorionic and monochorionic twins, and the nonreportable result rates were low. This study included high numbers of cases of trisomy 18 and 13 when compared with the current literature. Although screening for these conditions in twins seems to be promising, the numbers were too small to make definitive conclusions regarding the screening efficacy for these conditions. It is possible that cell-free DNA testing performance may differ among laboratories and vary with screening methodologies.
The relationship of suPAR levels and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy [Meeting Abstract]
Objective: Soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) is a biomarker of inflammation associated with autoimmune renal and cardiovascular disease that may be associated with preeclampsia. We aimed to evaluate plasma suPAR levels throughout pregnancy in women with and without hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP), including preeclampsia, eclampsia, and gestational hypertension.
Study Design: This was a secondary analysis of the NYU Children's Health and Environment Study (CHES), a prospective birth cohort designed to assess the impact of prenatal exposure to environmental chemicals on maternal and child health. CHES participants with suPAR data in any trimester and information about HDP were included (n=329). We regressed suPAR levels on the gestational age at time of sample collection to assess change over the course of gestation. Wilcoxon signed-rank tests were used to assess whether suPAR levels in each trimester and averaged over pregnancy were different among participants with and without HDP. Among a subset of participants with repeated measures, we utilized paired Wilcoxon tests to assess the within-person change in suPAR across trimesters in both groups.
Result(s): Participants with HDP (n=44) were older and had higher body mass index. In the overall population, suPAR decreased by 1.1% per week of advancing gestation (p< 0.001). suPAR levels did not significantly differ between those with and without HDP at any sampling timepoint. However, among the subset with repeated measures, suPAR values significantly decreased across pregnancy among those without HDP (p< 0.001), but remained stable among those with HDP (p=0.58) (Figure 1).
Conclusion(s): Although HDP is a primary cause of morbidity and mortality in pregnancy, predictive biomarkers are lacking. suPAR levels decrease with advancing gestation among healthy women, but remain stable in women with HDP, which may reflect a heightened inflammatory state. Additional research is needed to understand if stable suPAR levels can predict HDP accurately in clinical practice. [Formula presented] [Formula presented]
Thromboelastography versus standard coagulation assays in patients with postpartum hemorrhage
KEY WORDS/BACKGROUND:postpartum hemorrhage, thromboelastography, coagulopathy, fibrinogen, massive transfusion. OBJECTIVE:Thromboelastography, a point-of-care test that measures blood's dynamic viscoelastic properties, is routinely used to guide resuscitation in surgical specialties with high hemorrhage risk. Patients with ongoing postpartum hemorrhage often develop coagulopathy and hypofibrinogenemia. Timely assessment of fibrinogen is crucial because cryoprecipitate for repletion requires thawing prior to administration. Thromboelastography may provide rapid assessment of coagulopathy in ongoing hemorrhage but this has not been thoroughly studied. Our objective was to determine if thromboelastography accurately reflects coagulopathy in ongoing postpartum hemorrhage when compared to standard assays. STUDY DESIGN/METHODS:This was a retrospective cohort study of people with ongoing postpartum hemorrhage (quantified blood loss >1000 mL), from 1/1/16-12/31/19. Thromboelastography variables and standard coagulation parameters were compared in patients who had both assays drawn simultaneously. As a secondary analysis, patients who had thromboelastography were compared to those who did not. Mann-Whitney, Fisher's Exact, Kruskal-Wallis, Spearman's Rho, and logistic regression tests were used for analysis. Significance was set at p < 0.05. RESULTS:A total of 680 patients were included. 69 had thromboelastography and coagulation parameters drawn simultaneously and were included in the primary analysis. The remainder were included in the secondary analysis. Thromboelastography variables and coagulation assays correlated significantly - prolonged R with increased PTT (rho 0.25, p=0.04), prolonged K and decreased alpha angle with decreased fibrinogen (rho -0.61, p<0.001; rho 0.24, p<0.001), and decreased maximum amplitude with decreased platelets (rho 0.62, p<0.001). Those who had thromboelastographic assays had higher blood loss and need for interventions to manage hemorrhage than those who did not. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Thromboelastography correlated significantly with standard laboratory assays in ongoing postpartum hemorrhage, including for patients with hypofibrinogenemia Given the point-of-care nature and rapid turnaround time, thromboelastography should be considered for timely hemorrhage evaluation and directed resuscitation of coagulopathy.
Changes in plasma suPAR levels across pregnancy and in relation to hypertensive disorders [Letter]
OBJECTIVE:, suggesting that elevated suPAR levels may reflect a heightened inflammatory response in preeclamptic pregnancies rather than serving as a pre-clinical indicator. No data currently exist on the trajectory of suPAR across pregnancy. In the present study, we investigated if and how plasma suPAR levels change across gestation and examined whether this change and the levels in each trimester varied between women with and without HDP. STUDY DESIGN/METHODS:Participants included pregnant individuals enrolled in the [study name removed for blinding], a prospective birth cohort designed to study an array of exposures and conditions relevant to maternal and child health. Maternal blood was collected at up to three time points during pregnancy and plasma suPAR levels were analyzed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Information on maternal HDP was abstracted from electronic medical records. Study participants with suPAR data in any trimester and information about HDP were eligible for inclusion (n=393); 64 non-HDP participants who had chronic hypertension (n=5), gestational diabetes mellitus (n=55), lupus (n=1), type 1 diabetes (n=1) or type 2 diabetes (n=2) were excluded, resulting in a final analytic sample of 329. The study was approved by the Institutional Review Board of the [institution removed for blinding] and all participants provided written informed consent. We first regressed suPAR levels on gestational age at the time of sample collection to assess change over the course of pregnancy. We did this for the sample overall and stratified by HDP status. Among the subset of participants with repeated measures, we used paired Wilcoxon signed-rank tests to assess the within-person change in suPAR across trimesters in both groups. Finally, we used Wilcoxon signed-rank tests to assess whether suPAR levels in each trimester and averaged over pregnancy were different among participants with and without HDP. RESULTS:and ranged from 16.8-50.1; 44% of the sample was overweight or obese defined by a BMI ≥ 25. The majority had at least a high school degree (90.1%) and reported never smoking cigarettes (92.9%). Participants with HDP (n=44) were older and had higher BMI; other participant characteristics did not significantly vary by HDP status. suPAR levels did not significantly differ between those with and without HDP at any gestational timepoint (Table 1), although the association was marginal when considering the third trimester such that those with HDP had higher suPAR levels (2.43 ng/mL vs. 2.12 ng/mL, p=0.11). In the sample overall, suPAR levels decreased by 1.1% per week of advancing gestation (p-value< 0.001); however, when stratified by HDP status, suPAR levels only significantly decreased among those without HDP (1.2% per week, p<0.001), while remaining more stable among the cases (0.8% per week, p=0.17) (Figure 1). This finding was also apparent when examining the subset of participants with repeated measures. Among those with paired samples that did not have HDP, the median suPAR level in early gestation (2.79 ng/mL) was significantly higher than late gestation (2.30 ng/mL) with a p-value <0.001 and large effect size r=0.634. In contrast, among those with paired samples and HDP, the median suPAR level in early gestation (2.37 ng/mL) was not significantly different than late gestation (2.45 ng/mL) with a p-value=0.578 and small effect size r=0.256. It is notable however that the sample size of participants with repeated measures and HDP was small (n=7) and the timing of HDP onset was variable across participants. CONCLUSIONS:Although HDP is a primary cause of morbidity and mortality in pregnancy, predictive biomarkers are lacking. suPAR levels decrease with advancing gestation among healthy women, but remain stable in women with HDP, which may reflect a heightened inflammatory state. Additional research is needed to understand how suPAR correlates with other biomarkers of HDP and whether stable suPAR levels can predict HDP accurately in clinical practice.
The association of inflammatory markers in pregnant women with COVID-19 disease severity [Meeting Abstract]
Association of SARS-CoV-2 placental histopathology findings with maternal-fetal comorbidities and severity of COVID-19 hypoxia
OBJECTIVE/UNASSIGNED:SARS-CoV-2 is known to impact multiple organ systems, with growing data to suggest the potential for placental infection and resultant pathology. Understanding how maternal COVID-19 disease can affect placental histopathology has been limited by small study cohorts with mild disease, review by multiple pathologists, and potential confounding by maternal-fetal comorbidities that can also influence placental findings. This study aims to identify pathologic placental findings associated with COVID-19 disease and severity, as well as to distinguish them from changes related to coexisting maternal-fetal comorbidities. METHODS/UNASSIGNED:â€‰<â€‰0.05 considered significant. RESULTS/UNASSIGNED:â€‰=â€‰0.01). CONCLUSION/UNASSIGNED:In pregnancies complicated by COVID-19 disease, there was a high prevalence of placental histopathologic changes identified, particularly features of maternal vascular malperfusion, which could not be attributed solely to the presence of maternal-fetal comorbidities. The significantly increased prevalence of villous trophoblast necrosis in women needing respiratory support suggests a connection to the severity of COVID-19 illness.
Predictors of severe and critical disease in pregnant women with SARS-CoV-2
BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVE/UNASSIGNED:SARS-CoV-2 continues to spread widely in the US and worldwide. Pregnant women are more likely to develop severe or critical illness than their non-pregnant counterparts. Known risk factors for severe and critical disease outside of pregnancy, such as asthma, diabetes, and obesity have not been well-studied in pregnancy. We aimed to determine which clinical and pregnancy-related factors were associated with severe and critical COVID illness in pregnancy. STUDY DESIGN/UNASSIGNED:â€‰<â€‰.05. Multivariable logistic regression was performed including variables that were significantly different between groups. RESULTS/UNASSIGNED:< .01). After adjustment, history of smoking remained significantly predictive of severe/critical disease [aOR 3.84 (95% CI, 1.25-11.82)]. CONCLUSION/UNASSIGNED:Pregnant women with a history of smoking, asthma, or other respiratory condition, and COVID-19 diagnosis in the second trimester of pregnancy were more likely to develop severe/critical disease. These findings may be useful in counseling women on their individual risk of developing the severe or critical disease in pregnancy and may help determine which women are good candidates for vaccination during pregnancy.
COVID-related "lockdowns" and birth rates in New York [Letter]
OBJECTIVE:However to the best of our knowledge, empirical data to validate these projections and to look more specifically at the consequences of "lockdowns," have not yet been published. The objective of our study was to compare the birth rates in New York City and Long Island hospitals during the 9 months after the lockdown, to the birth rates during the same time frames in previous years. STUDY DESIGN/METHODS:This was a multicenter, retrospective study of live births from hospitals in the New York City Maternal-Fetal Medicine Research Consortium, an ongoing collaboration at several hospitals in New York City and Long Island. This consortium captures approximately one-third of the births in New York City (eg, of the 117,013 births recorded in 2017, 42,680 [36.6%] were from this consortium). To evaluate whether the lockdown in New York City (the first in the United States) between March 2020 and June 2020 resulted in a change in the number of births after the lockdown, we calculated the total live births 9 months after the lockdown (between December 2020 and February 2021) and compared the number with the total in the same 3 months during the previous 4 years. Fourteen hospitals with a total of greater than 55,000 annualized live births were included. Time series regression was performed to test the birth trends and to determine whether any change was a part of an ongoing trend. RESULTS:Figure 1 shows the total live births in the different time frames. There were 12,099 live births that occurred between December 2020 and February 2021. This is 2994 (19.8%) less live births than the previous year. In addition, the average number of live births in the 4 years before the study period was 15,101 births. This decrease was seen in all the hospitals included in the cohort. The hospitals located within New York City (N=10) had a larger drop in birth rate in the last 2 years (-1947, 18.9%) than in the hospitals located in Long Island (N=4) (-581, 13.4%). Figure 2 represents the total live births by individual hospitals in the different time frames. Among the entire cohort, the largest drop in birth rate in the previous years was only 4.9%. In addition, there was no significant trend in the number of births in the previous years (P=.586). Furthermore, no significant trend was identified in the hospitals located in New York City or Long Island (P=.831 and P=.178, respectively). Hospitals with large numbers of Medicaid-funded births showed the same trend as hospitals with smaller numbers of such births. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:The steeper decrease in live births in hospitals located in New York City than in those located in Long Island may be related to the population density and the recommended social distancing practices. The population density is higher in New York City than in Long Island (27,000 people per square mile vs 2360 people per square mile). Thus, the lockdown may have had a reduced effect on the number of live births in areas with a lower population density. In addition, most of the New York City residents outmigrated to surrounding locations including Long Island, which may have diminished the decrease in live births. Our data clearly demonstrate that there were significant changes in the number of births in the 9 months after the nation's first lockdown. Although we cannot definitively determine the contributions of migration, family choice, or other factors to those changes, these preliminary findings should provide direction to future studies. That work should consider zip codes, parities, and other factors that might exaggerate or mitigate the trends we report here.
COVID-19 vaccination in pregnancy: early experience from a single institution [Letter]
OBJECTIVE:Vaccination presents an important strategy to mitigate illness in this population. However, there is a paucity of data on vaccination safety and pregnancy outcomes because pregnant women were excluded from the initial phase III clinical trials. Our objective was to describe the maternal, neonatal, and obstetrical outcomes of women who received a messenger RNA (mRNA) COVID-19 vaccination while pregnant during the first 4 months of vaccine availability. STUDY DESIGN/METHODS:This was an institutional review board-approved descriptive study of pregnant women at New York University Langone Health who received at least 1 dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccination approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) from the time of the FDA Emergency Use Authorization to April 22, 2021. Eligible women were identified via search of the electronic medical record (EMR) system. Vaccine administration was ascertained via immunization records from the New York State Department of Health. Women were excluded if they were vaccinated before conception or during the postpartum period. Charts were reviewed for maternal demographics and pregnancy outcomes. Descriptive analyses were performed using the R software version 4.0.2 (The R Foundation, Boston, MA). RESULTS:We identified 424 pregnant women who received an mRNA vaccination. Of those, 348 (82.1%) received both doses and 76 (17.9%) received only 1 dose. The maternal characteristics and vaccination information are shown in Table 1. Of the included women, 4.9% had a history of a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis before vaccination. After vaccination, no patient in our cohort was diagnosed with COVID-19. In terms of the pregnancy outcomes, 9 women had spontaneous abortions, 3 terminated their pregnancies, and 327 have ongoing pregnancies. Of the women included, 85 delivered liveborn infants. There were no stillbirths in our population. Of the 9 spontaneous abortions, 8 occurred during the first trimester at a range of 6 to 13 weeks' gestation. There was 1 second trimester loss. The rate of spontaneous abortion among women vaccinated in the first trimester was 6.5%. The 327 women with ongoing pregnancies have been followed for a median of 4.6 weeks (range, 0-17 weeks) following their most recent dose. A total of 113 (34.6%) women, initiated vaccination during the first trimester, 178 (54.4%) initiated vaccination during the second trimester, and 36 (11.0%) during the third trimester. Following the vaccination, 2 fetuses (0.6%) developed intrauterine growth restriction, whereas 5 (1.5%) were diagnosed with anomalies. Outcomes for the 85 women who delivered are shown in Table 2. Of the women who delivered, 18.8% were diagnosed with a hypertensive disorder of pregnancy. The rate of preterm birth was 5.9%. One preterm delivery was medically indicated, whereas the remaining 3 were spontaneous. A total of 15.3% of neonates required admission to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Of the NICU admissions, 61.5% were because of hypoglycemia or an evaluation for sepsis. Other reasons for admission included prematurity, hypothermia, and transient tachypnea of the newborn. Of all the neonates, 12.2% were small for gestational age (SGA) per the World Health Organization standards. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Our rate of pregnancy-related hypertensive disorders is higher than our baseline institutional rate of 9.5%, however, this may be because of the underlying characteristics of our study population or skewing of our small sample size. Our 12.2% rate of SGA neonates is near the expected value based on the definition that 10% of neonates will be SGA at birth. The NICU admission rate is at par with our institutional rate of 12%. To date, most women in this series have had uncomplicated pregnancies and have delivered at-term. Strengths of this study include using the EMR system to identify subjects and gather data. We did not rely on self-enrollment and self-report, thereby reducing selection and recall bias. By performing manual chart reviews, we obtained detailed and reliable information about individual patients. One limitation of this study is the lack of a matched control group consisting of unvaccinated pregnant women and therefore direct conclusions could not be drawn about the relative risks of complications. In addition, our cohort is small and may not be generalizable. Finally, many women included are healthcare workers who had early access to vaccinations. As more pregnant women become eligible for the COVID-19 vaccinations, there is an urgent need to report on the maternal, neonatal, and obstetrical outcomes of COVID-19 vaccinations during pregnancy. The results of this study can be used to counsel and reassure pregnant patients facing this decision.