Maternal and fetal outcome of lupus pregnancy: a prospective study of 29 pregnancies

Lupus. 2005;14(2):145-51. doi: 10.1191/0961203305lu2072oa.


The aim of this study was to analyse pregestational and pregnancy risk factors for adverse fetal and maternal outcome in lupus pregnancy. Twenty women with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) (29 pregnancies) were prospectively evaluated. Mean patient age was 29.5+/-4.7 years, and mean disease duration, 6.3+/-6.5 years. Twenty-two pregnancies (75.9%) ended in live births; preterm delivery occurred in 17.4%, intrauterine growth restriction in 50%, preeclampsia in 3.7%, and gestational hypertension in 8%. Six pregnancies (20.7%) ended in spontaneous abortions. Adverse live-birth outcome was significantly associated with low pregestational serum albumin level, elevated gestational anti-dsDNA antibody, and diabetes mellitus. Spontaneous abortion was directly associated with low levels of pregestational serum albumin, positive anticardiolipin IgA, anti-beta2-glycoprotein I IgM, and anti-La antibodies, and inversely associated with number of patients' children. Postgestational lupus flare-up was noted in six pregnancies. Risk factors included high pregestational SLE Disease Activity Index (SLEDAI), lower serum albumin, elevated serum antibody to dsDNA, proteinuria, and use of prednisone and hydroxychloroquine. We conclude that despite high rate of obstetrical complications and postpartum lupus flare-up, pregnancy poses low risk for the majority of women with SLE.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Antinuclear / blood
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid / blood
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic* / blood
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications* / blood
  • Pregnancy Outcome*
  • Prenatal Care
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Serum Albumin / metabolism
  • Severity of Illness Index


  • Antibodies, Antinuclear
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid
  • Serum Albumin