Pregnancy Mortality Due to H1N1 Pandemic Identified
(HealthDay News) — During the 2009–2010 pandemic flu season, 12% of pregnancy-related deaths were attributed to confirmed or possible influenza A (H1N1)pdm09 infection, according to research published in the September issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.
William M. Callaghan, MD, from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues analyzed data from the CDC's Pregnancy Mortality Surveillance System to identify women whose death during or shortly after pregnancy was attributed or likely attributed to the influenza A (H1N1)pdm09 virus (April 15, 2009, through June 30, 2010).
The researchers found that during the pandemic season there were 915 pregnancy-related deaths and 4,911,297 live births. There were 75 confirmed deaths from influenza A (H1N1)pdm09 infection and 34 possible deaths (8.2 and 3.7%, respectively). Combining confirmed and possible influenza A (H1N1)pdm09 infection deaths yielded a pregnancy-related mortality ratio of 2.2 per 100,000 live births. The peak distribution of deaths occurred in October 2009.
"Because prediction of pandemics is difficult, planning for prevention of influenza and care for those women affected are critical for preventing associated severe maternal morbidity and mortality," the authors write.