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05th Mar 2021

Pregnant women advised after four preliminary stillbirths linked to Covid in Ireland

Dr Ronan Glynn has advised pregnant women to bring any concerns to their GP.

Pregnant women have been urged to maintain standard safety practices regarding Covid-19 as four reports of stillbirths are being potentially linked to the virus.

Additionally, pregnant women with Covid-19 should attend appointments after their infection and raise any concerns they may have with their GP.

The warning comes as experts determine whether there is a link between Covid Placentitis and the stillbirths. Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn said that these provisional reports should be interpreted with caution as they have not been finalised.

Dr Glynn said: “I would say to women it doesn’t mean you have to do anything different than you have been doing, if women have specific concerns, they should talk to their GP.”

He continued: “We know from international data, this is a very rare condition. We wouldn’t expect to see high incidences in this country. These findings are preliminary.”

Maternity hospitals and GPs have been made aware of the issue through alerts from HSE’s National Women and Infants Programme and the Institute of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

Meanwhile, the chair of of the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Dr Cliona Murphy said: “It is important that pregnant women who have Covid-positive results attend for appointments with their healthcare providers in the weeks after infection.”

Dr Murphy added: “The vast majority of pregnant women who had Covid have had mild symptoms and have not had adverse outcomes. Large-scale surveillance data in UK have not shown higher incidence of stillbirth.”

Covid Placentitis is a rare Coronavirus infection of the placenta in pregnant women with Covid-19. According to research published in the medical journal Placenta, only 11 cases have been notified internationally. The authors of the study found that the majority of pregnant women with Covid-19 have a positive outcome.