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J R Soc Med. 1999 May;92(5):237-8.

No association of Chlamydia with abortion.

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Institute of Veterinary Pathology, University of Zurich, Switzerland.


Case reports and serological work have raised the possibility that chlamydias can infect the placenta and thus harm the fetus. We investigated the involvement of Chlamydia in a series of 195 unselected cases of spontaneous abortion or miscarriage. Formalin-fixed placental tissues from all cases were examined immunohistochemically, for the presence of chlamydial lipopolysaccharide, as well as histopathologically. A serum sample was collected from 187 of the patients for detection of anti-chlamydial antibodies by microimmunofluorescence. All placental sections were negative for chlamydial antigen. Serological findings indicated that 8 patients had been in contact with C. trachomatis, 15 patients with C. pneumoniae, and none with C. psittaci. A few cases of perivillitis or intervillitis were detected, but none exhibited the intracytoplasmic inclusions typical of C. psittaci. Although these results are negative a search for Chlamydia in abortion materials should be encouraged.

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