Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy is a liver disorder, thought to be specific for pregnancy and to spontaneously resolve after delivery.
Increased rates of gallstone formation and Hepatitis C have previously been associated with intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy.
However, there are no longitudinal studies to determine its significance as an indicator of subsequent liver or biliary diseases.
Dr Anne Ropponen and colleagues from Finland conducted a retrospective cohort study.
The team assessed the risk of liver and biliary diseases in 21,008 women.
Of these, 10,504 presented with a history of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy during the years 1972 to 2000 and 10,504 had a normal pregnancy.
Cases and controls were matched for age, time of delivery, and place of delivery.
|Rate ratio for Hepatitis C was 4|
The diagnoses of liver and biliary disease were traced from the Finnish Hospital Discharge Register with an almost 100% coverage.
The researchers found that patients with intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy had a higher incidence of liver and biliary disease than in controls.
The rate ratio for Hepatitis C was 4, for nonalcoholic liver cirrhosis 8.
The team noted that the rate ratio for gallstones and cholecystitis was 4, and 3 for nonalcoholic pancreatitis.
Dr Ropponen's team concluded, “There is an association of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy with several liver and biliary diseases.”
“Some patients with Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy are at risk of the subsequent development of cirrhosis and other severe chronic diseases.”
“Contrary to what has been previously thought, follow-up may need to be considered for these patients.”