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Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 1990 Sep;33(1):7-12.

The effect of maternal age and socioeconomical background on neonatal outcome.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Hadassah University Hospital, Jerusalem, Israel.


This population-based study examined whether the neonatal outcome of primiparae is determined by maternal age or by her socioeconomic background. Data on all births in Israel during a three-month period was made available from a nation-wide census. Primiparae 30 years of age or older had a significantly (P less than 0.001) higher risk of low birthweight and prematurity. Perinatal mortality rates and low 5-min Apgar scores were not associated with maternal age, but were significantly (P less than 0.001) increased for the socioeconomically disadvantaged parturients. Our results suggest the growth retardation and short gestation among older primiparae may reflect biological aging of maternal tissues and the effect of diseases of pregnancy such as hypertension and preeclampsia, found significantly (P less than 0.001) more common for these mothers. Excessive perinatal mortality, on the other hand, may be attributable to environmental disadvantage of socioeconomically deprived populations.

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