Diagnostic Performance of Placental Growth Factor in Women With Suspected Preeclampsia Attending Antenatal Facilities in Maputo, Mozambique

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In well-resourced settings, reduced circulating maternal-free placental growth factor (PlGF) aids in either predicting or confirming the diagnosis of preeclampsia, fetal growth restriction, stillbirth, preterm birth, and delivery within 14 days of testing when preeclampsia is suspected. This blinded, prospective cohort study of maternal plasma PlGF in women with suspected preeclampsia was conducted in antenatal clinics in Maputo, Mozambique. The primary outcome was the clinic-to-delivery interval. Other outcomes included: confirmed diagnosis of preeclampsia, transfer to higher care, mode of delivery, intrauterine fetal death, preterm birth, and low birth weight. Of 696 women, 95 (13.6%) and 601 (86.4%) women had either low (<100 pg/mL) or normal (≥100 pg/mL) plasma PlGF, respectively. The clinic-to-delivery interval was shorter in low PlGF, compared with normal PlGF, women (median 24 days [interquartile range, 10–49] versus 44 [24–81], P=0.0042). Also, low PlGF was associated with a confirmed diagnosis of preeclampsia, higher blood pressure, transfer for higher care, earlier gestational age delivery, delivery within 7 and 14 days, preterm birth, cesarean delivery, lower birth weight, and perinatal loss. In urban Mozambican women with symptoms or signs suggestive of preeclampsia, low maternal plasma PlGF concentrations are associated with increased risks of adverse pregnancy outcomes, whether the diagnosis of preeclampsia is confirmed. Therefore, PlGF should improve the provision of precision medicine to individual women and improve pregnancy outcomes for those with preeclampsia or related placenta-mediated complications.

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