Women Supervised Under Professional Methadone Programs Show Comparable Pregnancy Outcomes to Non-Methadone Users [14L]

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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the outcomes of women treated under methadone maintenance programs versus those with cocaine or heroin use during pregnancy compared to non-drug users.


Retrospective review of deliveries at Winnie Palmer Hospital (WPH) between 1/1/2010 to 9/1/2013 (N=34,483). Data regarding methadone use was obtained from the WPH pharmacy and electronic labor and delivery log. Group 1 included 55 patients enrolled in professionally supervised methadone programs. Group 2 included 19 patients undergoing self treatment or not enrolled in a maintenance program but had positive cocaine on urine drug panel or admitted to heroin use during the pregnancy. Group 3 included 34,408 patients with no drug or methadone use in pregnancy. The stats included chi square, ANOVA and Mann Whitney U. SPSS analysis with P=<.05 for statistical significance.


In group 1, significant differences were noted in BMI (29 vs 27), estimated gestational age at delivery (EGA) (38.4 vs 36.2) and preterm birth (15% vs 53%) when compared to the cocaine/heroine group. Other clinical variables noted to be different included Hepatitis C (16% vs 5%), birth weight (3037 g vs 2747 g) and NICU admissions (16% vs 26%). Similarities in the outcomes for methadone patients compared to group 3 could be seen in BMI, EGA and rate of repeat cesarean sections.


Women in professionally supervised methadone programs have similar pregnancy outcomes in the tested variables as non-drug users. These favorable outcomes with methadone treatment in a professionally supervised program validate its use in pregnancy.

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