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Maternal intravenous immunoglobulin: A non-invasive treatment option for Rhesus D-sensitised women with previous adverse pregnancy outcomes

N Frank, P Naidoo, E Nicolaou

Abstract


Background. Maternal intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) may delay the onset and severity of fetal anaemia in Rhesus D (RhD)- sensitised pregnancies, thereby minimising the need for intrauterine transfusion and its associated complications.

Objective. To compare the pregnancy outcomes of RhD-sensitised women who received antenatal IVIG with those who did not receive antenatal IVIG.

Methods. This was a retrospective cross-sectional analysis of RhD-sensitised women who attended the Wits Fetal Medicine Centre (Johannesburg) from 1 January 2008 to 31 May 2018. Criteria for maternal IVIG administration were: (i) previous adverse pregnancy outcome (early neonatal death, intrauterine fetal death or miscarriage related to RhD sensitisation), (ii) women with high antibody titre levels (≥1:64) in the absence of fetal anaemia; and (iii) rising antibody titre levels. Maternal antibody titre levels, pregnancy and neonatal outcomes were compared in women who received IVIG v. those who did not receive IVIG.

Results. Of the 42 RhD-sensitised women, 14 received IVIG. A greater proportion of women experienced a decrease in antibody titres in the IVIG v. no-IVIG group (43% v. 11%, respectively; p=0.04). Nine of the 10 women in the IVIG group with a previous adverse pregnancy outcome had a successful pregnancy outcome following IVIG treatment.

Conclusion. Maternal IVIG may provide a successful pregnancy outcome in RhD-sensitised women with previous adverse pregnancy outcomes related to Rh disease, or women with raised or increasing maternal antibody titre levels who present in the first or early second trimester.


Authors' affiliations

N Frank, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

P Naidoo, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

E Nicolaou, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa; Morningside Mediclinic, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Pavilion for Women, Texas Children’s Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, USA

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Cite this article

South African Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology 2020;26(1):4-7. DOI:10.7196/sajog.1629

Article History

Date submitted: 2020-09-15
Date published: 2020-09-15

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