- 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Columbia University, New York, New York; and the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California.
Objective: To assess clinical characteristics, trends, and outcomes associated with the diagnosis of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection during pregnancy.
Methods: This cross-sectional study analyzed delivery hospitalizations using the National Inpatient Sample. Temporal trends in both diagnosis of HCV infection and clinical characteristics associated with HCV infection were analyzed using joinpoint regression to estimate the average annual percent change (AAPC) with 95% CIs. Survey-adjusted logistic regression models were fit to assess the association among HCV infection and preterm delivery, cesarean delivery, and severe maternal morbidity (SMM), adjusting for clinical, medical, and hospital factors with adjusted odds ratios (aORs) as the measure of association.
Results: An estimated 76.7 million delivery hospitalizations were included, in which 182,904 (0.24%) delivering individuals had a diagnosis of HCV infection. The prevalence of HCV infection diagnosed in pregnancy increased nearly 10-fold over the study period, from 0.05% in 2000 to 0.49% in 2019, representing an AAPC of 12.5% (95% CI 10.4-14.8%). The prevalence of clinical characteristics associated with HCV infection also increased over the study period, including opioid use disorder (from 10 cases/10,000 birth hospitalizations to 71 cases/10,000 birth hospitalizations), nonopioid substance use disorder (from 71 cases/10,000 birth hospitalizations to 217 cases/10,000 birth hospitalizations), mental health conditions (from 219 cases/10,000 birth hospitalizations to 1,117 cases/10,000), and tobacco use (from 61 cases/10,000 birth hospitalizations to 842 cases/10,000). The rate of deliveries among patients with two or more clinical characteristics associated with HCV infection increased from 26 cases per 10,000 birth hospitalizations to 377 cases per 10,000 delivery hospitalizations (AAPC 13.4%, 95% CI 12.1-14.8%). In adjusted analyses, HCV infection was associated with increased risk for SMM (aOR 1.78, 95% CI 1.61-1.96), preterm birth (aOR 1.88, 95% CI 1.8-1.95), and cesarean delivery (aOR 1.27, 95% CI 1.23-1.31).
Conclusion: Diagnosis of HCV infection is increasingly common in the obstetric population, which may reflect an increase in screening or a true increase in prevalence. The increase in HCV infection diagnoses occurred in the setting of many baseline clinical characteristics that are associated with HCV infection becoming more common.