Background: The literature on whether HIV infection and its complex antiretroviral treatments confer a higher risk for adverse pregnancy outcomes is controversial.
Objective: We compared rates of hospitalization for select morbidities among HIV-infected and uninfected pregnant women in the USA.
Design and methods: Using data from the 1994-2003 Nationwide Inpatient Sample, we used descriptive statistics and multivariate logistic regression to examine socio-demographic characteristics, morbidity outcomes and time trends.
Results: There were approximately 6000 hospitalizations per year of HIV-infected pregnant women in the USA. HIV-infected women were more likely to be hospitalized in urban hospitals, in the South, have Medicaid as the expected payer, have longer hospitalizations and incur higher charges than uninfected women. Hospitalizations for major puerperal sepsis, genitourinary infections, influenza, bacterial infections, preterm labor/delivery, and liver disorders were more frequent among pregnant HIV-infected women than their uninfected counterparts. However, rates of pre-eclampsia and antepartum hemorrhage were not significantly different. While rates of inpatient mortality and various infectious conditions decreased between 1994 and 2003, the rate of gestational diabetes increased among HIV-infected pregnant women.
Conclusions: HIV-infected pregnant women in the USA continue to be at higher risk for morbidity and adverse obstetric outcomes. With the introduction of antiretroviral therapy, rates of most of the conditions examined have either decreased or remained stable, hence current antiretroviral regimens do not seem to be associated with major adverse pregnancy outcomes on a population basis. The increase in gestational diabetes among HIV-infected women may be associated, in part, with antiretroviral therapy and merits further attention.