Placental intravascular organisms: A case report

A. Matoso, S. Shapiro, M. E. De Paepe, F. Gundogan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Ascending amniotic fluid bacterial infection is a cause of perinatal morbidity and mortality. A diagnosis of amniotic cavity infection can be inferred by documenting maternal (acute chorioamnionitis) and/or fetal (chorionic plate vasculitis; umbilical vasculitis/funisitis) inflammatory response. A definitive diagnosis of intrauterine/neonatal sepsis as a cause of stillbirth requires positive blood cultures obtained at postmortem examination. However, if postmortem examination is not performed, acute chorioamnionitis with/without fetal inflammatory response cannot be classified as a cause of demise. We present a case of intrauterine demise associated with acute chorioamnionitis, villitis, and intervillositis of the placenta. Although postmortem examination was denied, a conclusive diagnosis of intrauterine sepsis could be rendered by demonstration of gram-positive cocci within fetal vessels of umbilical cord, chorionic plate, and stem villi. This report highlights the importance of identification of placental intravascular organisms as unequivocal evidence of fetal sepsis, especially in cases where cultures cannot be obtained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)688-690
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Perinatology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • amniotic fluid infection
  • intrauterine sepsis
  • intravascular bacteria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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