The I3PT promotes research into pathologies associated with pregnancy

The I3PT promotes research into pathologies associated with pregnancy 1080 608 Mireia Córcoles
  • The Institute has created a new associated research group dedicated to medicine maternal-fetal, to study those pathologies related to pregnancy, which affect both the mother and the fetus
  • The aim is to promote research to improve the management of these pathologies and to improve the management and treatment of both patients

In recent years, there has been increased interest in get to know the fetus better And this has boosted his research, which has been propelled by technological progress in imaging techniques and genetic techniques. In this context, the research in maternal-fetal medicine has experienced great progress in the implementation of strategies for prediction, diagnosis and treatment of conditions that affect pregnancy and put at risk the health of the mother, the fetus – considered as an individual patient – ​​or both.

The Parc Taulí Research and Innovation Institute (I3PT) has created a associated research group in maternal-fetal medicine, under the coordination of the gynecologist Montserrat Comas, specialist in the Parc Taulí Gynecology and Obstetrics Service, to promote this investigation of the fetus and the mother and improve the diagnosis, management and treatment of both patients.

"We spent time doing studies and collaborating with other entities, and we realized that our research activity was growing and that we were at an optimal time to create a group that would order and promote our research in maternal-fetal medicine ", explains the main researcher of the group, integrated in the Epidemiology, Care Improvement and Chronicity Area of ​​the I3PT.

The group is currently made up of nine researchers, all of whom are gynecologists and obstetricians. "Our intention is to also incorporate other professional profiles in the field of maternal-fetal medicine and obstetrics," he says.

Maternal-fetal research study area

"Maternal-fetal medicine is characterized by having two patients at the same time: the mother and the fetus, whose well-being we must take into account simultaneously during the different stages of pregnancy," says Comas.

On the one hand, the maternal pathologies more frequent are the hypertension disorders, diabetes and other endocrinopathies of pregnancy and the prematurity (which may be due to the onset of premature contractions and/or a premature rupture of the amniotic membranes). On the other hand, the fetus can be affected by one intrauterine growth retardation, to malformations or for genetic alterations.

However, there is maternal conditions that may affect the fetus.

"We can find, for example, a problem of placental insufficiency which, due to the dysfunction of this placenta, causes the mother to have preeclampsia", which is a pregnancy disease characterized by high blood pressure and which it can affect other organs and, at the same time, inadequate blood flow to the placenta affects the fetus causing growth retardation, increased risk of prematurity and presenting neonatal complications".

From the beginning, the research group has focused the lines of research on the markers of placental insufficiency, the markers of prematurity, prenatal diagnosis of malformations or genetic anomalies, la diabetes i perinatal psychiatry.

With regard to perinatal psychiatry, work is being done to improve the gestational control of women with psychiatric illnesses, drug use, as well as women who have suffered a gestational loss.

Soon, in collaboration with the Psychoneuroendocrinology and stress in psychosis group of the I3PT, we would like to carry out a study to analyze how the mindfulness can help reduce anxiety in pregnant women to whom it is diagnosed that their fetus has a malformation or genetic disease”.

Collaborations with reference entities

The maternal-fetal research group is currently working on different studies in collaboration with other reference hospitals, such asHospital Clínic Barcelona-in the project OPTIMAL, to investigate the risk of premature birth and intra-amniotic infection in cases of threatened premature birth–; with theHospital Universitari Vall d'Hebron - in the project GRAFD, to improve the management of babies with growth retardation using angiogenic markers in the mother's blood, and in the project PRESCTWIN - in the prediction of preeclampsia in twin pregnancies.

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