A population-based cohort study of pregnancy outcomes among women with primary sclerosing cholangitis

Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2014 Jan;12(1):95-100.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2013.07.011. Epub 2013 Jul 23.


Background & aims: Studies of primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) and pregnancy outcomes have been limited in size and have been inadequate to rule out excess risks. We examined pregnancy outcomes among women with PSC.

Methods: Women with PSC were identified from inpatient and hospital-based outpatient data in the Swedish National Patient Register. Through linkage with the Medical Birth Register, we identified 229 singleton births, from 1987 through 2009, to women with PSC before delivery. These were compared with 2,304,863 births to women without a diagnosis of PSC. We used logistic regression, adjusted for maternal age, smoking, education, parity, and year of birth, to calculate adjusted prevalence odds ratios (aPORs) for adverse pregnancy outcomes.

Results: Maternal PSC was associated with a 3.63-fold increase in preterm birth (95% confidence interval [CI] for aPOR, 2.35-5.61) as well as an increased risk of cesarean section (aPOR, 2.18; 95% CI, 1.50-3.17). We found no increased risk based on analyses of the 5-minute Apgar score, small for gestational age, stillbirths, or neonatal deaths. Maternal PSC was not a risk factor for congenital abnormalities (aPOR, 1.12; 95% CI, 0.56-2.22). Stratification by inflammatory bowel disease status did not affect the risk estimates more than marginally.

Conclusions: Maternal PSC is associated with both preterm birth and cesarean section but not with congenital malformation or other adverse outcomes of pregnancy. Pregnancy should not be discouraged in women with PSC.

Keywords: Bile Duct Diseases; CD; CI; Child; Crohn's disease; IBD; ICD; International Classification of Diseases; LGA; Liver; MBR; PH; POR; PSC; Pregnancy; Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis; SGA; Swedish Medical Birth Registry; UC; aPOR; adjusted prevalence odds ratio; confidence interval; inflammatory bowel disease; large for gestational age; portal hypertension; prevalence odds ratio; primary sclerosing cholangitis; small for gestational age; ulcerative colitis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cesarean Section / statistics & numerical data
  • Cholangitis, Sclerosing / complications*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications*
  • Pregnancy Outcome*
  • Premature Birth / epidemiology
  • Sweden
  • Young Adult