[Source: Chest, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]
Original Research| March 14, 2013
A PROSPECTIVE STUDY OF RESPIRATORY VIRAL INFECTION IN PREGNANT WOMEN WITH AND WITHOUT ASTHMA
Vanessa E. Murphy, PhD; Heather Powell, MMedSc(ClinEpid); Peter A. B. Wark, BMed, PhD; Peter G. Gibson, MBBS
Author and Funding Information: Centre for Asthma and Respiratory Diseases, University of Newcastle and Hunter Medical Research Institute, Newcastle NSW Australia(Murphy, Powell, Wark, Gibson); John Hunter Hospital, Newcastle NSW Australia(Powell, Wark, Gibson)
Corresponding author: Dr Vanessa E Murphy, Centre for Asthma and Respiratory Diseases, Level 2, West Wing, Hunter Medical Research Institute, University of Newcastle, University Drive, Callaghan NSW 2308, Australia, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Funding information: This study was funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC, Grant ID: 455593). Vanessa Murphy was the recipient of an NHMRC Australian Research Training Fellowship (Part-time). Peter Gibson is an NHMRC Practitioner Fellow.
CHEST. March 14, 2013doi:10.1378/chest.12-1956 - Published online
Respiratory viral infections are common in pregnancy, but their health impact, especially in asthma is unknown. The objective of the study was to assess the frequency, severity and consequences of respiratory viral infection in pregnancy in women with and without asthma.
In this prospective cohort study, common cold symptoms were assessed during pregnancy in 168 women with asthma, and 117 women without asthma, using the common cold questionnaire and by self-report. Nasal and throat swabs were collected for suspected infections and tested by polymerase chain reaction for respiratory viruses. Pregnancy and asthma outcomes were recorded.
Pregnant women with asthma had more prospective self-reported and questionnaire detected common colds than pregnant women without asthma ( incidence rate ratio 1.77, 95% confidence interval [1.30, 2.42], P<0.0001). Retrospectively reported common colds in early pregnancy and postpartum were increased in asthma compared to women without asthma. The severity of cold symptoms was also increased in asthma (total cold score median 8 interquartile range [5, 10] in asthma, vs 6 [5, 8] in controls, P=0.031). Among women with asthma, having a laboratory confirmed viral infection was associated with poorer maternal health, with 60% of infections associated with uncontrolled asthma and a higher likelihood of pre-eclampsia.
Pregnant women with asthma have more common colds during pregnancy than pregnant women without asthma. Colds during pregnancy were associated with adverse maternal and pregnancy outcomes. Prevention of viral infection in pregnancy may improve the health of mothers with asthma.