Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth and BioMed Central.

Open Access Research article

Maternal markers for detecting early-onset neonatal infection and chorioamnionitis in cases of premature rupture of membranes at or after 34 weeks of gestation: a two-center prospective study

Thomas Popowski1*, François Goffinet12, Françoise Maillard1, Thomas Schmitz3, Sandrine Leroy14 and Gilles Kayem15

Author Affiliations

1 Epidemiological Research Unit on Perinatal and Women's Health, INSERM U953, Paris, France

2 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Maternity Port-Royal, Cochin-Saint Vincent-de-Paul Hospital, Paris, France and University Paris V, Paris, France

3 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Hôpital Robert Debré, Paris, France and University Paris VII, Paris, France

4 Centre for Statistics in Medicine University of Oxford, Oxford, UK

5 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, CHI Creteil, Creteil, France

For all author emails, please log on.

BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 2011, 11:26  doi:10.1186/1471-2393-11-26

Published: 7 April 2011

Abstract

Background

Accurate prediction of infection, including maternal chorioamnionitis and early-onset neonatal infection, remains a critical challenge in cases of preterm rupture of membranes and may influence obstetrical management. The aim of our study was to investigate the predictive value for early-onset neonatal infection and maternal histological and clinical chorioamnionitis of maternal biological markers in routine use at or after 34 weeks of gestation in women with premature rupture of membranes.

Methods

We conducted a two-center prospective study of all women admitted for premature rupture of membranes at or after 34 weeks of gestation. The association of C-reactive protein, white blood cell count, vaginal sample bacteriological results, and a prediction model at admission, for early-onset neonatal infection and maternal chorioamnionitis were analyzed by comparing areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves and specificity.

Results

The study included 399 women. In all, 4.3% of the newborns had an early-onset neonatal infection and 5.3% of the women had clinical chorioamnionitis. Histological chorioamnionitis was detected on 10.8% of 297 placentas tested. White blood cell counts and C-reactive protein concentrations were significantly associated with early-onset neonatal infection and included in a prediction model. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of this model was 0.82 (95% CI [0.72, 0.92]) and of C-reactive protein, 0.80 (95% CI [0.68, 0.92]) (p = 1.0). Specificity was significantly higher for C-reactive protein than for the prediction model (48% and 43% respectively, p < 0.05). C-reactive protein was associated with clinical and histological chorioamnionitis, with areas under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.61 (95% CI [0.48, 0.74]) and 0.62 (95% CI [0.47, 0.74]), respectively.

Conclusions

The concentration of C-reactive protein at admission for premature rupture of membranes is the most accurate infectious marker for prediction of early-onset neonatal infection in routine use with a sensitivity > 90%. A useful next step would be a randomized prospective study of management strategy comparing CRP at admission with active management to assess whether this more individualized care is a safe alternative strategy in women with premature rupture of membranes at or after 34 weeks.