Objectives: A prospective, controlled multicenter study was performed to estimate the obstetric risks of antiphospholipid antibodies (the lupus anticoagulant and anticardiolipin antibodies). In addition, the risks of prior thrombosis, obstetric history, systemic lupus erythematosus, and high-dose prednisone treatment were evaluated.
Study design: After screening for antiphospholipid antibodies in patients with lupus erythematosus or women with prior fetal loss(es), 59 subsequent pregnancies with and 54 without these antibodies were followed.
Results: The presence of the lupus anticoagulant and a history of at least three spontaneous abortions could predict fetal loss (p = 0.032 and 0.001, respectively). In live born infants, a low birth weight could be predicted by the presence of anticardiolipin antibodies (p = 0.034), prior intrauterine fetal death (p = 0.025), and treatment with high-dose prednisone (p = 0.002). No relationships were seen between antiphospholipid antibodies and small-for-gestational-age newborns and pregnancy-induced hypertension or preeclampsia. The disappearance of antiphospholipid antibodies during pregnancy was not correlated with live birth.
Conclusion: It is concluded that the presence of antiphospholipid antibodies is a risk factor for adverse pregnancy outcome.