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Am J Public Health. 1986 Apr;76(4):387-91.

Pregnancy outcomes among Spanish-surname women in California.


We compared pregnancy outcomes among United States-born and Mexican-born women having Spanish surnames with US-born Whites and Blacks using California's 1981 matched birth-death cohort file. Maternal risk characteristics between US-born Black women and US-born women with Spanish surnames were similar. In contrast, Latino women, regardless of national origin, delivered small proportions of low weight infants as compared to Blacks. Birthweight-specific mortality rates during the fetal and neonatal periods for the offspring of Mexican-born Spanish surname women were generally higher than those for other ethnic groups. Our findings are consistent with the underreporting of postneonatal deaths among Mexican-born Latinos, yet suggest that their relatively low reported infant mortality rates compared to Blacks can be explained by a more favorable birthweight distribution.

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