Malignant Disease in Children whose Mothers had Chickenpox, Mumps, or Rubella in PregnancyBr Med J 1972; 4 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.4.5841.629 (Published 16 December 1972) Cite this as: Br Med J 1972;4:629
- A. M. Adelstein,
- J. W. Donovan
To test the hypothesis that leukaemia may follow virus infection in pregnancy an analysis was made of deaths which occurred in a cohort of children born in 1951 and 1952 after pregnancies in which the mothers suffered virus infections—chickenpox or mumps at any stage of gestation or rubella in the first 18 weeks. All deaths which occurred between the children's second birthday and the end of 1971 were studied.
Two deaths from leukaemia occurred among the children whose mothers suffered from chickenpox, a significant excess. There were no deaths from leukaemia among the other children, but the causes of the two deaths after maternal mumps—Ewing's tumour and Still's disease—are noted because of their rarity.