Covid-19: 1st case of vertical transmission from pregnant woman to child reported in Pune

By: |
July 28, 2020 3:30 PM

Head of the department and Professor Dr Aarti Kinikar told the Indian Express that the case had turned out to be very challenging as the baby had developed severe symptoms of the disease.

Dr Kinikar said that the case was reported in a 22 year old pregnant woman who had reported to the hospital in the last week of May. (Representative image)

The first case of vertical transmission of Covid-19 from the mother to a child has been reported at Pune’s BJ Medical College and Sassoon General hospital. According to the researchers at the hospital, this is the first case of the transplacental transmission of Coronavirus from the mother to her foetus in the country, according to the Indian Express. The case was reported at the hospital’s Department of Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Microbiology and Biochemistry. Head of the department and Professor Dr Aarti Kinikar told the Indian Express that the case had turned out to be very challenging as the baby had developed severe symptoms of the disease.

Dr Kinikar said that the case was reported in a 22 year old pregnant woman who had reported to the hospital in the last week of May. She also said that though the woman had exhibited fever a day before her delivery, the Covid-19 PCR test had turned out to be negative and there were no other symptoms of the virus either. Subsequently an antibody test of the woman was taken which showed the presence of the infection. The doctor also said that soon after the baby was born, her nasopharyngeal swab, placenta along with umbilical stump were tested for Covid-19 which turned positive.

The symptoms of the infection also started reflecting in the infant within 24 to 48 hours including fever, lethargy and abnormal blood tests suggesting hyper inflammation. Dr Murlidhar Tambe, Dean of the BJ Medical College and Sassoon General Hospital told the Indian Express that after over three weeks of intensive care the baby got completely cured and was later discharged from the hospital.

This is not the first instance of the newborn coming into the grip of the virus as many infants are contracting the virus due to postnatal transmission from their mothers while they are being breastfed or other close contacts. However, this is the first case when the virus has been transmitted to the foetus inside the mother’s body. Earlier, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) had made it compulsory to run every pregnant woman through the Covid-19 PCR test. In April, the ICMR had also hinted at the possibility of the vertical transmission of the virus from pregnant women to their offspring.

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