Evidence published in JAMA Pediatrics suggests that neonatal outcomes following COVID-19 infection are good.
Demographic, epidemiological and clinical data from 33 neonates born to mothers with confirmed COVID-19 infection were reviewed. Only three (9%) infants had COVID-19 infection and were delivered at 31, 40 and 40 weeks gestation, via caesarean section due to maternal pneumonia and either meconium-stained amniotic fluid or foetal distress.
Infant one: presented with lethargy and fever on day 2 of life, with normal laboratory results.
Infant two: presented with lethargy fever and vomiting, with leucocytosis, lymphocytopenia, and an elevated creatine kinase-MB fraction.
Infant three: was born at 31 weeks and two days. Resuscitation was required. Sepsis was suspected, with Enterobacter agglomerates-positive blood culture, leucocytosis, thrombocytopenia and coagulopathy.
Chest X-rays on each infant showed pneumonia. Nasopharyngeal and anal swabs for each infant were positive for COVID-19 on days 2 and 4 but negative on day 6/7.
The authors point out that the most seriously ill neonate may have been symptomatic from prematurity rather than COVID-19.
Strict infection control during delivery indicated that viral sources were maternal. Amniotic fluid, cord blood, and breast milk were negative for COVID-19, although vertical transmission was not ruled out.