Chorioamnionitis Seen in More Than One-Third of Stillbirths

Observed at higher rates during early and late gestation

FRIDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Chorioamnionitis is present in about one-third of stillbirths, particularly those that occur during early and late gestation, according to study findings published in the March issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Heather E. Jeffery, Ph.D., of the University of Sydney in New South Wales, Australia, and colleagues examined the incidence of chorioamnionitis and fetal inflammatory response in 428 stillbirths over a 15-year period.

The researchers found that the overall incidence of chorioamnionitis was 36.9 percent, with higher rates observed during early and late gestation. The incidence of fetal inflammatory response was 13.3 percent, which was associated with spontaneous labor and very early spontaneous preterm death. A lack of response was correlated with unexplained antepartum death, the report indicates.

"The increased incidence of chorioamnionitis at extremes of gestation in stillbirth is novel and has important implications," Jeffery and colleagues conclude. "The impact of a fetal response is gestation dependent and its absence is associated with unexplained antepartum death.

Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Physician's Briefing