Am J Perinatol 2020; 37(10): 995-1001
DOI: 10.1055/s-0040-1712475
Original Article
Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

N95 Filtering Facepiece Respirator Use during Pregnancy: A Systematic Review

1  Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of South Florida, Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida
,
Nevena Krstić
1  Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of South Florida, Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida
,
Bradley H. Sipe
1  Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of South Florida, Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida
,
Sarah G. Običan
1  Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of South Florida, Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida
› Author Affiliations
Funding None.
Further Information

Publication History

30 April 2020

30 April 2020

Publication Date:
21 May 2020 (online)

Abstract

Objective This study was aimed to systematically review the use of filtering facepiece respirators, such asN95 masks, during pregnancy.

Study Design A comprehensive search for primary literature using Medline, Embase, Scopus, Web of Science, and ClinicalTrials.gov was conducted from inception until April 2020 to find articles reporting outcomes of pregnant women using filtering facepiece respirator (FFR). Studies were selected if they included the use of FFR in pregnant women and reported an outcome of interest including physiologic changes (heart rate, respiratory rate, pulse oximetry, and fetal heart rate tracing) or subjective measures (thermal or exertional discomfort or fit). The Newcastle-Ottawa Quality Assessment scale was used to assess the risk of bias. The main outcome was to describe the physiologic changes in pregnant women compared with nonpregnant women. Due to the small number of studies and heterogeneity of reported outcomes a meta-analysis was not conducted. Results of the studies were synthesized into a summary of evidence table.

Results We identified four studies, three cohort studies and one crossover study, comprising 42 women using FFR during pregnancy. Risk of bias was judged to be low. Studies were consistent in showing no significant increase in maternal heart rate, respiratory rate, oxygen saturation, and fetal heart rate between pregnant and nonpregnant women using N95 FFRs for short durations. Repeat fit testing was not supported for women gaining the recommended amount of weight during pregnancy. No evidence was found to reach conclusions about prolonged N95 FFR use in pregnancy.

Conclusion Limited duration N95 FFR use during pregnancy is unlikely to impart risk to the pregnant women or her fetus.

Key Points

  • Limited N95 use unlikely to impart risk to pregnant woman/fetus.

  • Prolonged N95 use in pregnancy is unstudied.

  • Repeat fit testing in pregnancy likely unnecessary.

Supplementary Material