Objective: To investigate the frequency of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) antibodies in parturient women, their partners, and their newborns and the association of such antibodies with obstetric and neonatal outcomes.
Methods: From April 4 to July 3, 2020, in a single university hospital in Denmark, all parturient women and their partners were invited to participate in the study, along with their newborns. Participating women and partners had a pharyngeal swab and a blood sample taken at admission; immediately after delivery, a blood sample was drawn from the umbilical cord. The swabs were analyzed for SARS-CoV-2 RNA by polymerase chain reaction, and the blood samples were analyzed for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. Full medical history and obstetric and neonatal information were available.
Results: A total of 1,313 parturient women (72.5.% of all women admitted for delivery at the hospital in the study period), 1,188 partners, and 1,206 newborns participated in the study. The adjusted serologic prevalence was 2.6% in women and 3.5% in partners. Seventeen newborns had SARS-CoV-2 immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies, and none had immunoglobulin M antibodies. No associations between SARS-CoV-2 antibodies and obstetric or neonatal complications were found (eg, preterm birth, preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, Apgar score, low birth weight, umbilical arterial pH, need for continuous positive airway pressure, or neonatal admission), but statistical power to detect such differences was low. Full serologic data from 1,051 families showed an absolute risk of maternal infection of 39% if the partner had antibodies.
Conclusion: We found no association between SARS-CoV-2 infection and obstetric or neonatal complications. Sixty-seven percent of newborns delivered by mothers with antibodies had SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies. A limitation of our study is that we lacked statistical power to detect small but potentially meaningful differences between those with and without evidence of infection.