Objective: There is limited data on pregnancy outcome in inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) (Crohn's disease [CD] and ulcerative colitis [UC]) from Eastern Europe. The aim of our multicenter study was to compare the pregnancy outcomes and the data of infants in pregnancies before and after the diagnosis of IBD.
Patients and methods: 97 pregnancies in women with IBD (36 CD and 61 UC) and 70 pregnancies in the same women before the diagnosis of IBD (24 CD and 46 UC) were compared. The influence of disease activity and medical treatment during pregnancy on gestational age at birth, birth weight, health status of the newborns and the frequency of childhood diseases were analyzed.
Results: Preterm birth and low birth weight were more common in IBD compared to those pregnancies delivered before the diagnosis of the disease (p = 0.008, p = 0.048). The occurrence of congenital abnormalities was not influenced by IBD, whereas childhood diseases occurred more frequently in the offspring of mothers with active UC. Disease activity in CD and UC during pregnancy did not predispose to abnormal birth outcome, compared to inactive disease. The type of medical treatment did not affect the pregnancy outcome in IBD.
Conclusion: Preterm birth and low birth weight were more common in IBD. The medical treatment of the active disease during pregnancy did not increase the frequency of abnormal birth outcomes. Medical maintenance treatment should be continued during pregnancy to avoid relapses, although IBD seems to be an independent risk factor for low birth weight and preterm birth.