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Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2012 Jun;250(6):915-23. doi: 10.1007/s00417-011-1648-2. Epub 2011 Apr 1.

Effects of maternal and placental inflammation on retinopathy of prematurity.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea.



To identify maternal and placental risk factors for the occurrence and progression of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).


This was a retrospective cohort study. The study cohort consisted of 246 infants with gestational age ≤ 32 weeks, with histologic examinations of their placentas. Medical records of eligible preterm infants were retrospectively reviewed. A regression model was constructed with control for known or potential factors associated with ROP. Occurrences of ROP, severe ROP (≥ stage 3), and clinically significant ROP requiring laser treatment were assessed.


ROP was diagnosed in 82 of 246 infants (33.3%), including 49 with mild ROP and 33 with severe ROP. Laser treatment was performed on 27 infants (11%: 27/246). Multivariate regression analysis indicated clinical chorioamnionitis and elevated maternal WBC count on admission to be associated with ROP occurrence [odds ratio (OR) = 4.370, P = 0.046; and OR = 1.104 per 1,000 cells/mm(3) incremental increase, P = 0.019, respectively], while the use of tocolytics was associated with reduced occurrence of ROP (OR = 0.278, P = 0.006). Elevated maternal WBC count on admission was also independently associated with ROP progression requiring laser treatment (OR = 1.171 per 1,000 cells/mm(3) incremental increase, P = 0.026). However, neither histologic chorioamnionitis nor funisitis was associated with the occurrence or progression of ROP.


Clinical chorioamnionitis and elevated maternal WBC count, but not histologic chorioamnionitis, were significantly and independently associated with ROP. These findings support the hypothesis that maternal systemic inflammation may play a role in the pathogenesis of ROP.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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