Placenta accreta is associated with elevated maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein

Michael J. Kupferminc*, Ralph K. Tamura, Thomas R. Wigton, Raymond Glassenberg, Michael L. Socol

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine whether placenta accreta/percreta/increta is associated with elevation of second-trimester maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein (MSAFP) levels. Methods: We reviewed the medical records of 44 women who had emergency cesarean hysterectomy. Twenty women had placenta accreta/percreta/increta (study group) and 24 underwent cesarean hysterectomy for other indications (control group). Pertinent maternal and neonatal variables were abstracted from the prenatal records and hospital charts. Chi-square and Fisher exact tests were used to analyze categorical variables. Student t test was used to analyze continuous variables. Results: Nine of 20 patients (45%) with placenta accreta/ percreta/increta and none of 24 subjects in the control group had an elevated MSAFP value (P < .001). Maternal estimated blood loss was also significantly greater in the study group (4469 ± 1851 versus 1885 ± 1113 mL; P < .0001), as was the number of blood units transfused (7.7 ± 4.7 versus 3.0 ± 2.2; P < .001). None of the other examined variables were different between the groups. Conclusions: A significant association exists between placenta accreta/percreta/increta and elevated MSAFP values. Patients with an unexplained elevation of MSAFP may have an increased risk for placenta accreta and associated blood loss at cesarean hysterectomy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)266-269
Number of pages4
JournalObstetrics and gynecology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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