Benefit of Early Initiation of Influenza Antiviral Treatment to Pregnant Women Hospitalized With Laboratory-Confirmed Influenza

J Infect Dis. 2016 Aug 15;214(4):507-15. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiw033. Epub 2016 Feb 3.


Background: We describe the impact of early initiation of influenza antiviral treatment among pregnant women hospitalized with laboratory-confirmed influenza during the 2010-2014 influenza seasons.

Methods: Severe influenza was defined as illness with ≥1 of the following: intensive care unit admission, need for mechanical ventilation, respiratory failure, pulmonary embolism, sepsis, or death. Within severity stratum, we used parametric survival analysis to compare length of stay by timing of antiviral treatment, adjusting for underlying conditions, influenza vaccination, and pregnancy trimester.

Results: Among 865 pregnant women, the median age was 27 years (interquartile range [IQR], 23-31 years). Most (68%) were healthy, and 85% received antiviral treatment. Sixty-three women (7%) had severe influenza, and 4 died. Severity was associated with preterm delivery and fetal loss. Women with severe influenza were less likely to be vaccinated than those without severe influenza (14% vs 26%; P = .03). Among women treated with antivirals ≤2 days versus those treated >2 days from illness onset, the median length of stay was 2.2 days (interquartile range [IQR], 0.9-5.8 days; n = 8) versus 7.8 days (IQR, 3.0-20.6 days; n = 7), respectively, for severe influenza (P = .03) and 2.4 days (IQR, 2.3-2.5 days; n = 153) versus 3.1 days (IQR, 2.8-3.5 days; n = 62), respectively, for nonsevere influenza (P < .01).

Conclusions: Early initiation of influenza antiviral treatment to pregnant women hospitalized with influenza may reduce the length of stay, especially among those with severe influenza. Influenza during pregnancy is associated with maternal and infant morbidity, and annual influenza vaccination is warranted.

Keywords: early antiviral treatment; influenza; influenza antiviral treatment; length of stay; pregnancy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Influenza, Human / drug therapy*
  • Length of Stay
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / drug therapy*
  • Secondary Prevention
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Antiviral Agents