Measles infection in pregnancy – prevention, complications and post-exposure prophylaxis

Abstract: Measles is a viral infection which is nowadays neither gone nor forgotten. It is transmitted by respiratory route after direct contact with airborne spread or infectious droplets and is one of the most contagious infectious diseases. Before live attenuated vaccine development, which is nowadays the best prevention, measles had its great influence on human morbidity and mortality, especially among children. Nevertheless, due to insufficient vaccine coverage, resurgence of measles has been reported in recent years. Pregnant women are a population at greater risk of severe clinical course of the disease and its complications. Observational studies indicate that measles infection in pregnancy increases the risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes, including both maternal and perinatal complications. A higher incidence of fever and pneumonia occur in pregnant women as well as spontaneous abortion, prematurity, NICU admissions and prolonged NICU hospitalizations. Unvaccinated individuals exposed to measles along with those with unknown vaccination status should be offered immune globulin as a post-exposure prophylaxis. If patient develops clinical features of measles despite immunoprophylaxis, careful observation and symptomatic treatment should be introduces as prevention of severe complications.

Oliwia Berkowska, Marta Kuchcinska, Joanna Kacperczyk-Bartnik, Agnieszka Dobrowolska-Redo, Pawel Bartnik, Ewa Romejko-Wolniewicz

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