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Lupus. 1997;6(9):681-4.

Adverse pregnancy outcome in the antiphospholipid syndrome: focus for future research.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, St Thomas Hospital, London, UK.


Pregnant patients with antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) may suffer from recurrent pregnancy loss, pre-eclampsia, intrauterine growth restriction and placental abruption. These conditions inevitably result in a high incidence of premature delivery with all the neonatal complications that follow. The mechanism underlying these adverse pregnancy outcomes has not yet been established. This may be primarily a maternal disease process with secondary placental maldevelopment and/or malfunction. Alternatively, there may be primary placental damage mediated directly or indirectly by antiphospholipid antibodies. The safe and successful treatment of pregnant women with APS lies in the understanding of the aetiology of this condition and the mechanism by which complications in pregnancy may arise. In this article we highlight areas in which research may be targeted such that our understanding of the pathogenesis of adverse pregnancy outcome may be enhanced.

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