LAS VEGAS – Women with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome who became pregnant were more likely to experience antepartum hemorrhage, placenta previa, cervical incompetence, and preterm birth, according to a retrospective cohort study of national birth data. Long hospital stays also were more likely among these women.
Infants born to women with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) were significantly more likely to have intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) as well, an unexpected and as-yet unexplained finding, said the study’s first author, Laura Nicholls-Dempsey, MD, speaking at a poster session at the meeting sponsored by the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine.
Complications were infrequent overall, with a very low rate of intrauterine demise and no maternal mortality seen in the 910 women with EDS who were studied, said Dr. Nicholls-Dempsey, an ob.gyn. resident at McGill University, Montreal.
In counseling women with EDS, Dr. Nicholls-Dempsey said that she would advise them that “these are the types of things we’re going to watch out for, and we’ll see how the pregnancy goes. But we have to be careful about these: preterm birth, antepartum bleeding, placenta previa. We’ll watch the growth of the baby; we just have to be more careful about these specific things.”
Compared with women without EDS, those with the inherited connective tissue disorder had adjusted odds ratios (AORs) of 3.2 for cervical incompetence (95% confidence interval, 2.0-5.1) and 2.2 for placenta previa (95% CI, 1.3-3.9; P less than .01 for both). Absolute rates for these complications were 0.8% and 0.7% for women without EDS and 2.1% and 1.4% for women with EDS, respectively.