Study reveals differences in neurodevelopment in children exposed to SARS-CoV-2 in utero


Source / Disclosures

source:

Castro Quintas, et al. Effect of maternal SARS-CoV-2 infection in the early stages of neonatal neurodevelopment: preliminary results in a Spanish multicenter study. Filed in: European Congress of Psychiatry. 4-7 June 2022 (virtual meeting).


Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.


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Preliminary data presented at the European Congress of Psychiatry showed that children born to mothers infected with COVID-19 during pregnancy had differences in behavior and movement compared to children not exposed to SARS-CoV-2.

“Not all babies born to mothers with COVID show differences in neurodevelopment, but our data show that their risk is increased compared to babies who were not exposed to COVID in the womb,” Rosa ayishahareolaPhD The study’s lead researcher, affiliated with the University Hospital Marqués de Valdecilla in Spain, said in a press release.


Results presented at the European Psychiatric Congress showed that children born to mothers infected with SARS-CoV-2 had differences in social behavior and motor function at 6 weeks compared to children born to non-infected mothers. Source: Adobe Stock

From 2017 to 2021, Ayesa-Arriola and colleagues enrolled pregnant women throughout pregnancy and after childbirth. The researchers administered the Newborn Behavioral Assessment Scale (NBAS) to 21 infants exposed to SARS-CoV-2 in utero and 21 unexposed infants aged 6 weeks to assess their neurological, social, and behavioral functions.

Adjusted analyzes showed that infants exposed to SARS-CoV-2 before birth had significantly lower scores for the NBAS social interaction dimension.

“Effectively, they react slightly differently to being held or cuddled,” said the study’s first author. Agoda Castro QuintasAnd the said a PhD researcher at the University of Barcelona in a press release.

According to the statement, vulnerable children appear to have more difficulty moving their heads and shoulders.

“This is an ongoing project, and we are at an early stage,” Castro Quintas noted in the statement. “We found that babies whose mothers were exposed to COVID showed neurological effects at 6 weeks, but we don’t know if these effects will lead to any long-term problems. Long-term monitoring may help us understand this.”

References:

  • Babies exposed to COVID in utero show changes in neurodevelopment. https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/954662. Published June 5, 2022. Accessed June 8, 2022.
  • Castro Quintas, et al. Effect of maternal SARS-CoV-2 infection in the early stages of neonatal neurodevelopment: preliminary results in a Spanish multicenter study. Filed in: European Congress of Psychiatry. 4-7 June 2022 (virtual meeting).

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