Stillbirth, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, and placental pathology

Karen J. Gibbins, Robert M. Silver, Halit Pinar, Uma M. Reddy, Corette B. Parker, Vanessa Thorsten, Marian Willinger, Donald J. Dudley, Radek Bukowski, George R. Saade, Matthew A. Koch, Deborah Conway, Carol J. Hogue, Barbara J. Stoll, Robert L. Goldenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Introduction Stillbirth, preeclampsia, and gestational hypertension (PE/GH) have similar clinical risk factors and redundant placental pathology. We aim to discern if stillbirth with PE/GH has a particular phenotype by comparing stillbirths with and without PE/GH. Methods Secondary analysis of the Stillbirth Collaborative Research Network, a population-based cohort study of all stillbirths and a sample of live births from 2006 to 2008 in five catchment areas. We compared placental pathology between stillbirths and with and without PE/GH, stratified by term or preterm. We also compared placental pathology between stillbirths and live births with PE/GH. Results 79/518 stillbirths and 140/1200 live births had PE/GH. Amongst preterm stillbirths, there was higher feto-placental ratio in PE/GH pregnancies (OR 1.24 [1.11, 1.37] per unit increase), and there were more parenchymal infarctions (OR 5.77 [3.18, 10.47]). Among PE/GH pregnancies, stillbirths had increased maternal and fetal vascular lesions, including retroplacental hematoma, parenchymal infarction, fibrin deposition, fetal vascular thrombi, and avascular villi. Discussion Stillbirth pregnancies are overwhelmingly associated with placental lesions. Parenchymal infarctions are more common in PE/GH preterm stillbirths, but there is significant overlap in lesions found in stillbirths and PE/GH.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-68
Number of pages8
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016


  • Placental pathology
  • Preeclampsia
  • Stillbirth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Developmental Biology


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