Epilepsy in pregnancy can lead to substantial maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality. Early intervention in pregnant women with epilepsy (WWE), accurate assessment of the severity of their condition, and effective treatment are required to improve maternal and neonatal prognosis. Many obstetricians lack experience in monitoring and treating pregnant WWE.
The aim of this study was to describe the demographic and clinical characteristics of pregnant WWE and examine maternal and neonatal outcomes.
Medical records of 75 pregnant women with a history of epilepsy who delivered at Beijing Tiantan Hospital, China between January 2006 and December 2019 were retrospectively reviewed. Pregnant women with a history of epilepsy were matched 1:2 with a control group of 150 pregnant women without epilepsy who delivered at Beijing Tiantan Hospital during the same time period. Information including type and frequency of epilepsy and seizures, maternal complications, medication, delivery mode, newborn weight, and newborn Apgar score were recorded. In subgroup analyses, pregnant WWE were stratified according to presence or absence of seizures during pregnancy and generalized seizure vs. nongeneralized seizure.
The incidence of anemia, hypertensive disorder of pregnancy, premature rupture of membranes (PROM), cesarean section, and postpartum hemorrhage was significantly higher (p < 0.05), and mean newborn weight and newborn Apgar score were significantly lower (p < 0.05) in pregnant WWE compared with pregnant women without epilepsy. The incidence of premature delivery was significantly higher (p < 0.05), and mean newborn weight was significantly lower (p < 0.05) in pregnant WWE with seizures vs. without seizures. Mean newborn weight was significantly lower (p = 0.01) in pregnant WWE with nongeneralized seizures vs. generalized seizures.
Pregnant WWE are at high risk of anemia, gestational hypertension, PROM, cesarean section, postpartum hemorrhage, and low newborn weight and Apgar score. Women with epilepsy who experience seizures during pregnancy are at high risk of preterm birth and having low birth weight infants. Pregnant WWE who experience nongeneralized seizures are at high risk of having low birth weight infants. These data emphasize the need to routinely monitor fetal weight on ultrasound and offer appropriate intervention. These findings highlight the need for healthcare providers to take a multidisciplinary approach to the management of pregnant WWE.
Pregnant WWE are at high risk of obstetric complications. Women with epilepsy who experience seizures during pregnancy are at high risk of preterm birth and having low birth weight infants. Pregnant WWE who experience nongeneralized seizures are at high risk of having low birth weight infants. These data highlight the need for healthcare providers to take a multidisciplinary approach to the management of pregnant WWE.

Copyright © 2020 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

References

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