Background: The outcomes of pregnancy in patients with cirrhosis are poorly described. Our objective was to assess obstetric outcomes in cirrhotic women and their infants from a population-based perspective.
Methods: We analysed the 1993–2005 US Nationwide Inpatient Sample database to identify obstetric hospitalizations among patients with cirrhosis (n=339) and controls matched on age, hospital and year (n=6625). The effect of cirrhosis on maternal and fetal outcomes was evaluated using regression models with adjustment for patient and hospital factors.
Results: Between 1993 and 2005, 114 antepartum and 225 delivery admissions in cirrhotic patients were identified. The estimated mean number of deliveries nationwide increased from 68 to 106 annually between 1993 and 1999 and 2000 and 2005 (P=0.0004). Patients with cirrhosis were more likely to deliver by caesarean [42 vs. 28%; adjusted odds ratio (OR) 1.41; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.06–1.88]. Maternal (1.8 vs. 0%; P<0.0001) and fetal mortality (5.2 vs. 2.1%; P<0.0001), antepartum admission (OR 2.97; 95% CI 2.24–3.96), and maternal (OR 2.03; 95% CI 1.60–2.57) and fetal complications (OR 3.66; 95% CI 2.74–4.88) were greater among cirrhotic patients than controls. Gestational hypertension, placental abruption and uterovaginal haemorrhage were more common in patients with cirrhosis; their infants had higher rates of prematurity and growth restriction. Hepatic decompensation occurred in 15%, including ascites in 11% and variceal haemorrhage in 5%. In women with decompensation, maternal and fetal mortality were 6 and 12% respectively.
Conclusions: Although rare, pregnancies among women with cirrhosis are increasing. Cirrhotic patients and their infants have an increased risk of obstetric complications, emphasizing the importance of close maternal–fetal monitoring during pregnancy.