The management of HCV-infected pregnant women

Guillermo Valladares*, Maria H. Sjogren, Alfonso Chacaltana

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Hepatitis C is, at present, a worldwide health problem and is the most common cause of liver transplantation. Its prevalence in pregnant women is similar to that of the general population. In the absence of cirrhosis and portal hypertension, most HCV-infected pregnant women do not have obstetric complications. Screening of pregnant women that are asymptomatic and do not have risk factors is not cost effective. A high hepatitis C viral load reportedly increases vertical transmission and is higher in women who are coinfected with HIV or who are intravenous drug users. Prolonged rupture of the membrane for more than 6 h, amniocentesis, and perineal lacerations increase the potential risk of perinatal transmission. Although the hepatitis C virus can be transmitted intrapartum, prevention by caesarean delivery is not generally indicated. The HCV virus can be found in maternal milk; however, breast feeding is not contraindicated. In conclusion, there are no antiviral treatment recommendations for HCV-infected women during pregnancy, or guidelines for the prevention of vertical transmission.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-97
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Hepatology
Issue numberSUPPL. 1
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Hepatitis c
  • Pregnancy
  • Risk factors
  • Vertical transmission
  • Viral load


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