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    Hepatitis B virus (HBV) remains a major global public health problem worldwide; in endemic areas, mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) of HBV is the most common transmission route. Previous studies have shown that amniocentesis for prenatal diagnosis increases the risk of MTCT of HBV among highly viraemic mothers. However, no data is available on MTCT related fetal blood sampling (FBS) because of the paucity of cases or lack of attention. We present a case series of HBV-infected women who underwent FBS with or without antiviral therapy during pregnancy and discuss the risk of MTCT after FBS. Six hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg)-positive pregnant women who underwent FBS for prenatal diagnosis were retrospectively reviewed. Their infants were followed up with HBV serology parameters until at least 12 months of age. Among 6 cases, two hepatitis B e-antigen (HBeAg)-positive mothers had high viral loads > 7.0 log10 IU/mL, and one of them received antiviral therapy at 26+ 3 gestational weeks and achieved an anticipated level of 4.52 log10 IU/mL before FBS, while the other one did not receive any antiviral treatment. The other 4 cases were HBeAg-negative with low viral loads. Only a child born to the HBeAg-positive mother, who had no antiviral therapy with a viral load of 7.48 log10 IU/mL before FBS, was found to have MTCT with HBsAg persistently positive from birth to 12 months of age. The other 5 children were both HBsAg-negative and HBsAb-positive at the end of follow-up. FBS may increase the risk of MTCT of HBV in women with HBeAg-positive and high viral loads; therefore, FBS should be avoided in this high-risk population. Maternal HBV serologic testing and awareness of the potential risk of MTCT should be recommended before FBS. Antiviral therapy may be effective to decrease the risk of MTCT after FBS in highly viraemic women. © 2021. The Author(s).


    Zhenyan Han, Yuan Zhang, Jin Zhou, Qingqing Wang, Yonghua Huang, Hongying Hou. Risk of mother-to-child transmission of hepatitis B virus after fetal blood sampling: a report of six cases. BMC infectious diseases. 2021 Jul 30;21(1):716

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    PMID: 34330230

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