MS Doesn’t Put Pregnant Women at Higher Risk

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) — In a finding that should reassure women with multiple sclerosis (MS) who want to have a baby, new research suggests the disease doesn’t raise the risk of pregnancy complications.

“Women with multiple sclerosis may be understandably concerned about the risks of pregnancy,” said study author Dr. Melinda Magyari, from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

“While previous research has shown there is no higher risk of birth defects for babies born to women with MS, there are still a lot of unknowns around pregnancy and MS,” Magyari said. “We wanted to find out if women with MS are at risk for a variety of pregnancy complications. We found overall their pregnancies were just as healthy as those of the moms without MS.”

In the study, researchers compared almost 3,000 pregnant women with MS to nearly 57,000 pregnant women without the autoimmune disease. All of the women gave birth between 1997 and 2016.

There was no difference between the two groups in the risk of several pregnancy complications: preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, placenta complications, emergency cesarean section, instrumental delivery, stillbirth, preterm birth, congenital malformations, or low Apgar score.

An Apgar score is a measure of a newborn’s health — including heart rate, reflexes and muscle tone — conducted immediately after birth.

The study did find that rates of elective cesarean section were higher among women with MS (14%) than among those without MS (8%). After adjusting for other factors — such as a prior C-section or mother’s age — the researchers concluded that women with MS were 89% more likely to have an elective C-section.

Other findings were that women with MS were 15% more likely to have an induced delivery than women without MS, and that women with MS were 29% more likely to have babies that were small for their gestational age (3.4% vs. 2.8%). The study was published in the Feb. 3 online issue of the journal NeurologyClinical Practice.

“We think the reason more women with MS have babies by elective C-section or induced delivery may have to do with MS-related symptoms such as muscle weakness, spasticity or fatigue that might affect the birth,” Magyari said in a journal news release. “Any of these could make a mom more tired and lead to delivery complications that could prompt the clinician and woman to take extra precautions.”

More information

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society has more on MS and pregnancy.

SOURCE: NeurologyClinical Practice, news release, Feb. 3, 2021

Latest articles

Geopolitical Interests Let Down the Besieged People of Myanmar

There is a saying in Myanmar that...

Big Paychecks Pay Off in Self-Confidence

Can money buy you happiness? A new study suggests it's linked to greater feelings of confidence and pride.

Scientists Discover ‘Space Hurricane’ High Above The Earth

Scientists have identified a “space hurricane” ― an approximately 620-mile-wide whirling mass of plasma in the upper atmosphere above the magnetic North Pole.  The...

Celebrities Dance to Cardi B’s “Up” in TikTok Challenge

As long as TikTok keeps coming up with new dance challenges, we'll keep watching. Celebrities certainly appear to be having fun with one...

Related articles

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here