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Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Volume 5, Issue 2, Pages 183-191

Recurrent Fetal Loss and Antiphospholipid Antibodies: Clinical and Therapeutic Aspects

Service de Médecine Interne, Hôpital Foch, 40 rue Worth, Suresnes 92151, France

Received 1 October 1997; Accepted 21 October 1997

Copyright © 1997 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Recurrent fetal losses indicate screening for antiphospholipid antibodies, especially after the third consecutive fetal loss, or when they occur after 12 weeks gestation or when the mother presents with thrombosis or other ailments of antiphospholipid syndrome. Fetal loss may be caused by thromboses of placental vasculature. There is no agreement concerning the mechanism of thromboses: protein C pathway and/or annexin V are the best candidates. When fetal loss occurs early during gestation, murine models suggest that antiphospholipid antibodies can also act on trophoblasts by inhibiting syncytia formation. Among the high risk patients with more than two fetal losses, an association of aspirin and heparin given early during gestation is successful in 70–80% of cases.