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Stillborn Case Linked to Bleeding Gums During Pregnancy

Posted 22 Jan 2010 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Jan. 22 – A new report shows the first documented link between fetal death and a mother's pregnancy-related gum disease. The patient, a 35-year-old woman, delivered a full-term stillborn baby in Santa Monica, Calif. During her pregnancy, she had experienced severe gum bleeding, a symptom of pregnancy-related gingivitis. Hormonal changes during pregnancy often lead to bleeding gums, with an estimated 75 percent of pregnant women experiencing the problem, the study authors noted. But, they explained, bleeding in the gums allows bacteria in the mouth to enter the bloodstream and potentially infect a fetus unless it is stopped by the immune system. In the case of this patient, postmortem tests suggest that bacteria from the mouth entered the bloodstream, traveled to the placenta and infected and killed the fetus, according to the report in the February issue of Obstetrics & ... Read more

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