Pregnancy outcome in 100 women with autoimmune diseases and anti-Ro/SSA antibodies: a prospective controlled study.Lupus. 2002; 11(11):716-21.L
Anti-Ro/SSA antibodies are associated with neonatal lupus but are also considered a possible cause for unexplained pregnancy loss and adverse pregnancy outcome. In a large multicentres cohort study we have prospectively followed 100 anti-Ro/SSA positive women (53 systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)) during their 122 pregnancies and 107 anti-Ro/SSA negative women (58 SLE) (140 pregnancies). Anti-Ro/SSA antibodies were tested by immunoblot and counterimunoelectrophoresis. Mean gestational age at delivery (38 vs 37.9 weeks), prevalence of pregnancy loss (9.9 vs 18.6%), preterm birth (21.3 vs 13.9%), cesarean sections (49.2 vs 53.4%), premature rupture of membranes (4.9 vs 8.1%), preeclampsia (6.6 vs 8%), intrauterine growth retardation (0 vs 2.3%)and newborns small for gestational age (11.5 vs 5.8%) were similar in anti-Ro/SSA positive and negative SLE mothers; findings were similar in non-SLE women. Two cases of congenital heart block were observed out of 100 anti-Ro/SSA positive women. In conclusion, anti-Ro/SSA antibodies are responsible for congenital heart block but do not affect other pregnancy outcomes, both in SLE and in non-SLE women. The general outcome of these pregnancies is now very good, ifprospectively followed by multidisciplinary teams with ample experience in this field.