Obstetric and gynecologic implication of brucellosis in Kuwait

J Perinatol. 1998 May-Jun;18(3):196-9.


Objective: To study the possible correlation between maternal Brucella infection and reproductive failure as expressed by abortion, intrauterine fetal death, and preterm delivery.

Study design: Maternal enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay serologic and microagglutination testing and conception product culture for Brucella were done in 227 women with preterm delivery, 51 with intrauterine fetal death, 29 with spontaneous abortion, and 39 with term delivery of a normal baby.

Results: Ingestion of raw milk was positive in 18% of the control cases, 28% of preterm delivery cases, 30% of intrauterine fetal death cases, and 21% of spontaneous abortion cases. Acute or chronic Brucella infection was found in 8% of preterm, 10% of intrauterine fetal death, and 7% of abortion cases. None of the control cases had evidence of Brucella infection. None of the four groups showed positive culture of the placenta for Brucella. The titres of Brucella-specific immunoglobulin G and M were significantly higher in the preterm, abortion, and intrauterine fetal death groups than in the control group.

Conclusion: A possible correlation may exist between Brucella infection and preterm and intrauterine fetal death, which does not seem to be related to transplacental infection but possibly may relate to the acute illness.

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Spontaneous / microbiology*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Brucella / immunology
  • Brucella / isolation & purification
  • Brucellosis / complications*
  • Brucellosis / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Fetal Death / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / analysis
  • Immunoglobulin G / immunology
  • Immunoglobulin M / analysis
  • Immunoglobulin M / immunology
  • Incidence
  • Kuwait
  • Obstetric Labor, Premature / microbiology*
  • Placenta / microbiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious*
  • Reference Values


  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Immunoglobulin M