Epidemiology and pathogenesis of ureaplasma urealyticum in spontaneous abortion and early preterm labor

Anne Naessens, Walter Foulon, Hendrik Cammu, Annieta Goossens, Sabine Lauwers

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49 Citations (Scopus)


The role of U. urealyticum in spontaneous and recurrent spontaneous abortion was studied in 633 women. Cervical colonization with U. urealyticum was found in 42.6% of 310 normal pregnant women, in 41.6% of 84 patients who underwent induced abortion, in 41.5% of 41 normal fertile patients, in 53.3% of 122 patients with spontaneous abortion and in 64.5% of 76 patients with recurrent spontaneous abortion. The cervical isolation rate was significantly higher in patients with spontaneous abortion (p less than 0.05) and recurrent spontaneous abortion (p less than 0.005) than in normal pregnant women. Endometrial colonization was more frequent in patients with recurrent spontaneous abortion (27.6%) than in normal fertile women (9.7%) (p less than 0.05). Moreover, in 6 patients with intact membranes and uncontrollable preterm labor resulting in fetal loss (all between the 20th and 28th week of gestation) U. urealyticum was isolated in 5 of them from the cervix, in 4 patients from the placenta and in 2 out of 4 from the amniotic fluid. Histological examination of the placenta showed signs of chorioamnionitis in 5 patients. From this study we conclude that although U. urealyticum is a common inhabitant of the lower genital tract, it may play a role in the etiology of spontaneous abortion and uncontrollable preterm labor.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)513-516
Number of pages4
JournalActa Obstet Gynecol Scand
Publication statusPublished - 1987


  • ureaplasma urealyticum
  • abortion
  • preterm labor.


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