I keep pushing that pregnant women should get the COVID-19 vaccine because of the disease’s poor prognosis. A recent meta-review clarifies that pregnant women have worse outcomes and prognoses from the disease than non-pregnant women.
This morning, I read a heartbreaking story of a 30-year-old woman who died from COVID-19 within a week after giving birth to her baby girl, Summer Reign McMullen. The mother, Kristen, was only able to hold her newborn for two minutes before she had to be moved to the intensive care unit.
So, I’m going to write about the difference in COVID prognosis between pregnant and non-pregnant women. Maybe what I’ll write here will cause one pregnant woman to get the vaccine – saving her life and allowing her baby to grow up with a mother. I hope someone will listen. I hope someone will take what I write and show it to a friend, sibling, daughter, or mother who has avoided the vaccine. Hope isn’t scientific, but that’s all I’ve got right now.
Difference in COVID prognosis– pregnant and non-pregnant women
In a systematic review and meta-analysis published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, researchers examined outcomes for pregnant and non-pregnant women after a laboratory-confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19.
As I have written previously, systematic reviews and meta-analyses rank at the top of the hierarchy of biomedical research. These types of studies intended to identify and remove bias, examine the quality of studies, and then, roll them up into one larger study with more powerful statistical measurements.
As a result, this study included nine published studies that comprised 591,058 women (28,797 pregnant and 562,261 non-pregnant). By any measurement, this is a huge database of information to measure a differential prognosis between pregnant and non-pregnant cohorts who contracted COVID-19.
This is what they found:
- The relative risk for ICU admission was 2.26X greater for pregnant versus non-pregnant women with COVID-19.
- The relative risk for requirement of invasive mechanical ventiliation was 2.68X greater for pregnant women.
- These results were despite the fact that non-pregnant women were more likely to have a higher frequency of comorbidities such as smoking history, chronic cardiac disease, renal disease, and other conditions that could have been confounders if they were more frequent in pregnant women.
The authors of the study concluded:
Although the frequency of risk factors and the risk of experiencing clinical symptoms of COVID-19 were higher among non-pregnant women, COVID-19-infected pregnant women had a higher requirement of ICU admission and invasive mechanical ventilation compared to non-pregnant COVID-19-infected women.
Get the vaccine, so you can live a full life with your children.
- Khan DSA, Pirzada AN, Ali A, Salam RA, Das JK, Lassi ZS. The Differences in Clinical Presentation, Management, and Prognosis of Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 between Pregnant and Non-Pregnant Women: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 May 24;18(11):5613. doi: 10.3390/ijerph18115613. PMID: 34074005; PMCID: PMC8197383.
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