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J Pediatr Surg. 2009 Aug;44(8):1546-51. doi: 10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2008.10.109.

Demographic and environmental risk factors for gastroschisis and omphalocele in the National Birth Defects Prevention Study.

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Department of Pediatrics, Center for Applied Research and Evaluation, College of Medicine, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR 72202-3591, USA.



Primary prevention efforts for both gastroschisis and omphalocele are limited by the lack of known risk factors. Our objective was to investigate associations between potential maternal risk factors and gastroschisis and omphalocele within a large population-based sample of participants enrolled in the National Birth Defects Prevention Study (NBDPS).


Demographic, health-related, and environmental exposure data from the NBDPS were collected from women with expected delivery dates between October 1997 and December 2003. Data were collected on 485 cases of gastroschisis, 168 cases of omphalocele, and 4967 controls.


Women who had offspring with gastroschisis were younger (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 0.84; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.81-0.86) and less likely to be black (AOR, 0.54; 95% CI, 0.34-0.85) than controls. They also were more likely to have smoked (AOR, 1.51; 95% CI, 1.12-2.03), taken ibuprofen (AOR, 1.61; 95% CI, 1.23-2.10), and consumed alcohol (AOR, 1.38; 95% CI, 1.06-1.79) than controls. Women who had offspring with omphaloceles were more likely to have consumed alcohol (AOR, 1.53; 95% CI, 1.04-2.25) and be heavy smokers (AOR, 4.26; 95% CI, 1.58-11.52) than controls.


Our results suggest a moderately increased risk of gastroschisis among women who used tobacco, alcohol, and ibuprofen during early pregnancy. A modestly elevated risk was observed for omphaloceles among women who used alcohol during the first trimester and among women who were heavy smokers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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