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COVID-19 during pregnancy not likely to impact babies’ health: Researchers

Pregnant Woman with a Doctor

*Health experts found at six-month check-ups, infants showed no signs of poor growth or altered development, describing the development as ‘very good news during the pandemic that has been especially hard on populations facing health inequities

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Researchers at the Children’s Hospital of Chicago, in the United States (US) in a recent study explored how infants’ health is affected when their mothers contract the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic during pregnancy.

The studing findings indicated that infants’ growth and development reached normal, healthy levels by the time they reached six months old, even if their mothers were infected with COVID-19 when they were in uteri.

Researcher Dr. Malika Shah said: “Our results should be reassuring to pregnant women with COVID-19 who are worried about how the virus might affect the baby.

“At six-month follow-up, we observed normal growth patterns and developmental milestones, with the rate of development referrals not higher than what we normally see. “This is very good news during the pandemic that has been especially hard on populations facing health inequities and the disproportionate impact of COVID-19.”

In regard to how infants’ health may not be compromised by COVID-19 for the study, the researchers analysed data from over 30 infants born between April and July 2020.

Fifty-five percent of the mothers tested positive within 10 days of giving birth, and none of the infants tested positive at the time of birth, report stated.

The researchers tracked the infants’ health outcomes during their first six months after birth.

The researchers, ultimately, found that infants born to mothers who had COVID-19 were just as healthy as infants who had no connection to the virus.

Findings further showed that the infants were growing normally, the large majority were up to date on their vaccines, and that their parents were consistent with taking infants to follow-up appointments.

Going forward, the researchers hope more studies look into how infants’ health is affected when mothers contract COVID-19 during pregnancy.

Dr. Shah also stated: “As the pandemic persists and variants emerge, looking at longer-term outcomes is critical.”

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