This pandemic has thrown us for quite a loop. Have your prenatal appointments changed to telemedical appointments? With the ever-changing news, uncertainties and restrictions imposed in our lives, what does this mean for those of us who are pregnant? What is known however, is mostly positive. Pregnant women don’t seem to be particularly susceptible to the virus. This does not mean that they are immune to it either!
Currently, our understanding of the impact of COVID-19 on reproduction and pregnancy is limited. There are reports of women who have tested positive for COVID-19, who have delivered babies who do not have disease. Additionally, there is limited information from published scientific reports about the susceptibility of pregnant women to COVID-19 and the severity of infection. Available data are reassuring, but are limited to small case series.
As of late, hospitals are taking extra precautions to help people give birth during this pandemic. This includes limited amount of support allowed in the labor and delivery room. This does not include virtual supporters. Check with your doctor about their preferences and guidelines, as it changes daily.
If you are delivering, it is said that hospitals are making plans to ensure that healthy pregnant women are separate from the infected ones. Also, hospitals are following CDC guidelines to evaluate pregnant women for Covid-19 symptoms. Anyone who exhibits symptoms is given a mask and delivers in a separate area.
Currently there is no evidence that a pregnant person can transmit the virus to the fetus during pregnancy or birth. There is also no evidence that the virus passes through breastmilk but as always, it’s best to check with you OB if you’re planning on pumping.
It’s important to note that coronaviruses are unrelated to the ZIKA virus, which has very clear implications for pregnancy and fetal development. Miscarriage and still birth are more common with influenza infection in pregnancy, and therefore could be a risk of COVID delaying pregnancy until risk of infection is low would be prudent to minimize the above risks.
Unfortunately, this has become our new reality. Stay informed and wash your hands! Pregnant women should continue to practice social distancing, diligent hygiene and seek information from your doctor! Shared Conception is there for our surrogates at any time.