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BMJ. 1997 Dec 6;315(7121):1498-502.

Change in social status and risk of low birth weight in Denmark: population based cohort study.

Author information

1
Danish Epidemiology Science Centre, Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Aarhus University, H√łegh, Denmark. ob@soci.aau.dk

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To estimate the risk of having a low birthweight infant associated with changes in social, environmental, and genetic factors.

DESIGN:

Population based, historical cohort study using the Danish medical birth registry and Statistic Denmark's fertility database.

SUBJECTS:

All women who had a low birthweight infant (< 2500 g) (index birth) and a subsequent liveborn infant (outcome birth) in Denmark between 1980 and 1992 (exposed cohort, n = 11,069) and a random sample of the population who gave birth to an infant weighing > or = 2500 g and to a subsequent liveborn infant (unexposed cohort, n = 10,211).

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Risk of having a low birthweight infant in the outcome birth as a function of changes in male partner, area of residence, type of job, and social status between the two births.

RESULTS:

Women in the exposed cohort showed a high risk (18.5%) of having a subsequent low birthweight infant while women in the unexposed cohort had a risk of 2.8%. After adjustment for initial social status, a decline in social status increased the absolute risk of having a low birthweight infant by about 5% in both cohorts, though this was significant only in the unexposed cohort. Change of male partner did not modify the risk of low birth weight in either cohort.

CONCLUSION:

Having had a low birthweight infant and a decline in social status are strong risk factors for having a low birthweight infant subsequently.

PMID:
9420490
PMCID:
PMC2127928
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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