World Tuberculosis Day: Calling Attention to TB in Pregnancy

Posted on

By: Kayla McGowan, Project Coordinator, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

end-tbThe causes of maternal death are shifting: Non-obstetric causes—including HIV-related conditions, infectious diseases such as tuberculosis (TB) and other pre-existing medical conditions—account for nearly a third of maternal deaths and a host of maternal newborn health complications. For example, the presence of TB during pregnancy, delivery and postpartum greatly increases the risk of premature birth, low birthweight, intrauterine growth retardation and perinatal death. Since women are most likely to develop TB during their reproductive years, drawing attention to TB in maternal and reproductive health research is critical.

On World Tuberculosis Day, we call on the global reproductive and maternal health community to unite in our efforts to end TB and improve maternal newborn health around the world.  The Maternal Health Task Force has compiled key research and resources related to TB in pregnancy and beyond:


Global forum for tuberculosis research PLOS | 2017

Latent tuberculosis in pregnancy: A systematic review PLOS | 2016

Tuberculosis in association with HIV/AIDS emerges as a major nonobstetric cause of maternal mortality in sub-Saharan Africa Obstetrics & Gynaecology | 2010

Tuberculosis in pregnancy BJOG | 2010

Tuberculosis in pregnancy: An estimate of the global burden of disease The Lancet | 2014

Tuberculosis in pregnant and postpartum women: Epidemiology, management, and research gaps Clinical Infectious Diseases | 2012

The neglected global burden of tuberculosis in pregnancy Commentary | The Lancet | 2014

Reports and publications

Global Tuberculosis Report 2016 World Health Organization | 2016

Ethics Guidance for the Implementation of the End TB Strategy World Health Organization | 2017

Blog posts

What to Do About Tuberculosis in Pregnancy Jhpiego | 2016

What Tuberculosis Means for Maternal Health UN | 2015

Join the conversation on social media using #WorldTBDay #UniteToEndTB

Have you conducted research related to indirect causes affecting maternal health? Submit to the MHTF-PLOS Collection by 1 April 2017!