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Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2011 Jan;154(1):31-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ejogrb.2010.08.006. Epub 2010 Sep 6.

Younger maternal age (at initiation of childbearing) and recurrent perinatal mortality.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine, College of Medicine, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL 33613, United States.



To assess whether young maternal age at initiation of childbearing is associated with recurrence of perinatal mortality (PM), as well as its components: stillbirth and neonatal death.


We conducted a population-based, retrospective cohort study on the Missouri maternally linked longitudinal data files comprising adolescent (10-19 years; n = 73,533) or mature (20-24 years; n = 78,618) mothers in their first pregnancy with follow-up in their second pregnancy to document the occurrence of PM or its components. The study covered the period 1989-2005. We used unconditional logistic regression modeling to generate odds ratios and to control for confounding.


A history of perinatal mortality, stillbirth, or neonatal mortality increased the risk of a recurrence by 4-5 times. Among women with a history of PM or stillbirth in the first pregnancy, maternal age at initiation of pregnancy was not a risk factor for subsequent PM or its components. However, adolescent mothers with a history of neonatal mortality in the first pregnancy were about 5 times as likely to experience stillbirth in the second pregnancy, as compared to their mature counterparts.


Young maternal age at the initiation of childbearing is not associated with an overall increased risk of recurrent perinatal loss. However, prior history of neonatal mortality among teen mothers is strongly predictive of subsequent stillbirth.

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