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Covid-19 Primary Care Resources

Risks of Covid-19 in pregnancy

Guidance has been updated as evidence emerges

This information is sourced from the RCOG:

Risks to pregnant women

  • Pregnant women do not appear more likely to contract Covid-19 than the general population
  • More than two-thirds of pregnant women with Covid-19 are asymptomatic
  • Most pregnant women will experience only mild or moderate cold/flu-like symptoms
  • There is now growing evidence that pregnant women may be at
    increased risk of severe illness from Covid-19 compared with non-pregnant women, particularly in the third trimester
  • Symptomatic maternal Covid-19  is associated with a two to three times greater risk of preterm birth, principally from iatrogenic preterm birth
  • Be aware of the increased risk of domestic abuse in pregnancy, which has escalated during this pandemic

Risk factors that appear to be associated both with being infected and being admitted to hospital with Covid-19 include:

  • Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) background
  • Having a BMI of 25 kg/m2 or more
  • Pre-pregnancy co-morbidity, such as pre-existing diabetes and chronic hypertension
  • Maternal age 35 years or older
  • Living in areas or households of increased socioeconomic deprivation

Healthcare providers should be aware of this increased risk, and have a lower threshold to review and admit women of BAME background

Risks to fetus and neonate

  • Symptomatic maternal Covid-19 is associated with an increased likelihood of iatrogenic preterm birth
  • Aside from preterm birth, there is no evidence that Covid-19 infection has an adverse effect on the fetus or on neonatal outcomes

How should prevention of venous thromboembolism (VTE) be addressed during the Covid-19 pandemic?

  • All women should have a VTE risk assessment performed during their pregnancy as per the RCOG Guideline (summary on page 33)
  • Women who are self-isolating at home should stay well hydrated and mobile
  • If there are concerns about the risk of VTE during a period of self-isolation the risk assessment should be repeated
  • Infection with Covid-19 should be considered as a transient risk factor and prompt reassessment of VTE risk
  • Thromboprophylaxis commenced for pregnant women should continue until they have recovered from the acute illness (between 7 and 14 days)
  • For women with ongoing morbidity and limited mobility, advice from a clinician with expertise in VTE should be sought

Information for pregnant women is available on the RCOG Website

See Also:

Covid vaccinations: Conception, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding