Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2008 Aug 15;148C(3):162-79. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.c.30181.

Gastroschisis: international epidemiology and public health perspectives.

Author information

  • 1ECLAMC/GENETICA/FIOCRUZ, Av. Brasil 4365, Pav. 26, sala 617, 21045-900 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


Gastroschisis offers the intriguing epidemiological situation of a pandemic, strongly associated with very low maternal age. Identifying gastroschisis, and distinguishing it from the other abdominal wall defects, is theoretically easy but difficult in practice. The baseline birth prevalence of gastroschisis before the pandemic was approximately 1 in 50,000 births and has increased since between 10- and 20-fold. In many populations worldwide, it is still increasing. Such increasing prevalence and the association with very low maternal age are well proven, but the interaction between these two findings remains unknown. Geographic gradients (decreasing prevalence from North to South) are clear in Continental Europe and suggestive in Britain and Ireland. Gastroschisis seems more frequent in Caucasians compared to African Blacks and Orientals, and in Northern compared to Southern Europeans. These observations indicate the need for investigating gene-environment interactions. Since the global human situation is marked by inequalities among as well as within countries, the medical care and public health impact of gastroschisis varies widely among regions and social strata. The postnatal benefits of prenatal diagnosis of gastroschisis include family awareness; adequate planning of delivery with alerted obstetrical, pediatric, and surgical staff; optimal risk categorization, and personalized protocol for action. The increasing prevalence of gastroschisis combined with improved medical techniques to reduce morbidity and mortality are also increasing the burden and costs of this anomaly on health systems.

Copyright 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Wiley
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk