Preeclampsia reflects an unusual increase in systemic inflammation during pregnancy.
We studied associations between preeclampsia and asthma, allergy, and eczema in Copenhagen Prospective Studies on Asthma in Childhood2000 (COPSAC2000) and in national registries.
COPSAC2000 is a high-risk birth cohort of 411 Danish children. Asthma, allergy, and eczema were diagnosed prospectively, and lung function measured at age 1 month and 7 years. Sensitization was evaluated at age 6 months, 18 months, 4 years, and 6 years by skin prick tests and IgE measurements. The register-based cohort included 1.7 million children from Danish national registries in the 35-year period 1977-2012. Children born to mothers with preeclampsia were analyzed regarding risk of asthma, allergy, and eczema.
In the COPSAC2000 cohort, 5.6% (n?=?23) were diagnosed with preeclampsia. Preeclampsia was associated with increased risk of treatment with inhaled corticosteroids at age 7 years (adjusted odds ratio, 4.01 [95% confidence interval (CI), 1.11-14.43]; P?=?0.0337), increased bronchial responsiveness to methacholine (adjusted ß-coefficient log-µmol, -0.80 [95% CI, -1.55 to -0.06]; P?=?0.0348), and allergic rhinitis (adjusted odds ratio, 4.83 [95% CI, 1.58-14.78]; P?=?0.0057) in the 7-year-old children. Furthermore, the children had an increased risk of sensitization to both aeroallergens and food allergens, and increased amount of total IgE during childhood. In the registry-based cohort, 3.7% (n?=?62,728) were born to mothers with preeclampsia. Preeclampsia was associated with increased risk of asthma, eczema, and aeroallergen and food allergy, especially pronounced after a duration of preeclampsia of 14 days or more. Maternal asthma increased the risk of preeclampsia.
Preeclampsia is a shared prenatal risk factor for asthma, eczema, and allergy in childhood pointing toward in utero immune programming of the child.