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J Perinatol. 1999 Apr-May;19(3):216-9.

Obesity and related pregnancy complications in an inner-city clinic.

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Department of OB/GYN, Sinai Hospital of Baltimore, Baltimore, MD 21215, USA.



The study was designed to determine the prevalence of obesity and related pregnancy complications in an inner-city prenatal clinic.


A retrospective review was conducted of the medical records of 281 women with no chronic diseases and who delivered singleton term babies during a 1-year period. The frequencies of various pregnancy complications, including pregnancy-induced hypertension, preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, shoulder dystocia, postpartum hemorrhage, fourth degree laceration, intrauterine growth restriction, and macrosomia, were compared among groups of patients stratified by body mass index (BMI).


Thirty-four percent of patients had a reported prepregnancy BMI of > 26 kg/m2. Fifty-two percent of patients were obese (BMI > 26 kg/m2) when they registered for prenatal care, and 82% of patients had a BMI > 26 kg/m2 at the time of delivery. The incidence of birth weights of > 4 kg was significantly higher in women with a registration BMI > 26 kg/m2 (p = 0.026). Most of these macrosomic babies had mothers with a BMI > 29 kg/m2. Patients who required cesarean delivery had significantly higher BMI than those who were delivered vaginally (p < 0.001).


Obesity was more common in our inner-city population than has previously been reported and was associated with an increased risk of fetal macrosomia and operative delivery.

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