Clinical Edge

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Better screening needed to reduce pregnancy-related overdose, death

Key clinical point: Drug-induced death is the leading cause of pregnancy-associated death in Utah, primarily occurring in the late postpartum period.

Major finding: Despite known history, pregnant women were not systematically screened for drug use or treated for mental health disorders or drug misuse.

Study details: A retrospective cohort study of 136 pregnancy-associated deaths, of which 26% were drug induced.

Disclosures: Dr. Smid is supported by the Women’s Reproductive Health Research Career Development Program. The authors reported no other financial relationships or potential conflicts of interest.


Smid M et al. Obstet Gynecol. 2019;133:1131-40.