Neonatal outcomes in 29 pregnant women with COVID-19: A retrospective study in Wuhan, China

1. Approximately 41.4% of neonates born to COVID-19-positive women in Wuhan, China presented with radiological findings of pneumonia

2. Limited sample size and comparisons limit interpretations, but intrauterine or intrapartum transmission may be possible.

Evidence Rating Level: 3 (Average)

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has surged over the course of several months, with more than 6,000,000 known cases and 360,000 deaths across the globe since June 1, 2020. Previous studies have revealed that pregnant women experience clinical symptoms similar to non-pregnant women. However, the outcomes of neonates born to COVID-19-infected women is not yet known. This retrospective study of 29 pregnant women (M [SD] age = 29.59 [3.56] years, 56.6% higher education, 51.7% employed) with COVID-19 (13 confirmed, 16 clinically diagnosed) across two general hospitals in Wuhan, China sought to investigate these neonatal outcomes. Data was collected between January 30 and March 10, 2020 with 30 neonates, with one set of twins. Maternal demographic and clinical information was included, along with laboratory tests and chest x-ray and/or computed tomography of neonates who were hospitalized. Hospitalization occurred with 18 cases, where neonates either had symptoms (5 cases) or their guardians agreed to quarantine (13 cases). All but 3 cases (10.34%) were born between 36- and 41-weeks’ gestation. For 12 cases, neonates were discharged following birth with telephone follow-up. A total of 12 hospitalized neonates presented with radiological features of pneumonia through chest screening, 1 presented with cough and other associated symptoms. SARS-CoV-2-specific serum immunoglobulin M and immunoglobulin G were measured in 4 neonates, with 2 being positive. In spite of the limited sample size and reduced statistical power, this study suggests that intrapartum or intrauterine transmission of COVID-19 may be possible, resulting in associated radiological findings of pneumonia in certain neonates.

Click to read the study in PlosONE

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