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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1995 Oct;173(4):1337-42.

Salivary estriol as risk assessment for preterm labor: a prospective trial.

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  • 1Department of Obstretics and Gynecology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver 80262, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Increased understanding of human parturition allows for novel approaches to (1) identification of women at increased risk for preterm birth and (2) development and controlled testing of etiology-based strategies to prevent preterm birth.

STUDY DESIGN:

Five hundred forty-two women were enrolled at five study sites in a prospective evaluation of salivary estriol in samples obtained weekly beginning at 22 weeks' gestation (Salest, Biex, Inc., Boulder, Colo.). Estriol concentrations were determined with a well-characterized enzyme-linked immunoassay. Women adjudged at either high risk or low risk for prematurity were evaluated through to delivery.

RESULTS:

A total of 267 women submitted serial samples that were analyzed; 241 women with singleton pregnancies submitted sufficient samples. Twenty-three women with singleton fetuses went into idiopathic preterm labor (without prior rupture of membranes) and were delivered preterm (mean 35 weeks' gestation); 182 were delivered at term (> or = 37 weeks' gestation). Mean (geometric) estriol concentrations were higher from 24 to 34 weeks in women with singleton pregnancies delivering preterm (p < 0.05). A surge in estriol concentrations occurred approximately 3 weeks before the onset of labor in both women delivering at term and those delivering preterm. This increase occurred approximately 4 weeks earlier in women delivered preterm versus term. Receiver-operator curve analyses showed that exceeding a 2.3 ng/ml saliva estriol level was associated with occurrence of preterm labor (71% sensitivity, 77% specificity, 23% false-positive rate).

CONCLUSION:

Detection of an early estriol surge or increased level (> or = 2.3 ng/ml) may be clinically helpful in identifying women at elevated risk for preterm labor and birth, allowing for evaluation of biologically based interventions in controlled trials.

PMID:
7485350
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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