Scientists may have found a way to prevent coronavirus spread
The reason for this study being carried out was due to previous reports of a baby born to a woman infected with the coronavirus which did test positive for COVID-19 within 36 hours of birth, however it is not clear whether, in this case, this was contracted before or after birth.
The new study suggests that intrauterine infections are impossible, however the research team has emphasized that their findings were based on a small number of cases collected in a short period of time. In addition, these cases include only women who are in the third trimester and who delivered via cesarean section. As a result, it is still unclear how the infection affects mothers and babies in the first or second trimester and whether the infection can be passed from mother to child during vaginal childbirth.
Professor Zhang Yuanzhen said in the journal press release:
It is important to note that this case lacks many important clinical details, so we cannot draw conclusions about whether intrauterine infection is possible from this case. Nevertheless, we should still continue to pay special attention to newborns born to pregnant women with COVID-19 pneumonia to help prevent infection in this group.”
In the coming days, guidance will be published by the Royal College of Midwives, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, Public Health England and Health Protection Scotland for healthcare professionals on how best to handle coronavirus in pregnancy, including the effects on pregnant women and fetuses, as well as advice for those who have been exposed, travel advice and postnatal management. Source:
Smart Cells Journal references:
Chen, H., et al . (2020) Clinical characteristics and intrauterine vertical transmission potential of COVID-19 infection in nine pregnant women: a retrospective review of medical records. The Lancet . doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30360-3 .
Qiao, J (2020) What are the risks of COVID-19 infection in pregnant women?. The Lancet . doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30365-2 .
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