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Fat Intake and the Risk of Gastroschisis


Siega-Riz, Anna Maria; Olshan, Andrew F.; Werler, Martha M.; Moore, Cynthia A.; & the National Birth Defects Prevention Study, (2006). Fat Intake and the Risk of Gastroschisis. Birth Defects Research, Part A: Clinical and Molecular Teratology, 76(4), 241-245.


BACKGROUND: Young age has been associated with an increased risk of gastroschisis. It has been suggested that the pathogenesis of gastroschisis may be related to vascular disruption. Nutrients that may be associated with vasoconstriction include dietary fat and its subtypes. The objective of this study was to examine the association between dietary fats and gastroschisis and whether maternal age modified this association.
METHODS: Data came from the National Birth Defects Prevention Study (NBDPS), which included 304 isolated gastroschisis cases and 3313 controls. Dietary intake in the year prior to conception was ascertained using a food frequency questionnaire, and included total, saturated, monosaturated, and polyunsaturated fat and cholesterol. Unconditional logistic regression was used to estimate the odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), adjusting for confounders. Age and smoking were tested as effect modifiers.
RESULTS: Higher mean intakes of total energy, total fat, and cholesterol as well as the subtypes of fats were found for gastroschisis cases compared to controls. Cases were more likely to be in the middle (adjusted OR [AOR], 1.3; 95% CI, 0.9-1.9) and highest (AOR, 1.2; 95% CI, 0.8-1.7) tertile of total fat intake compared to controls. This pattern was also true for saturated fat intake. No association was found for mono or polyunsaturated fat. Cases were less likely to be in the middle (AOR, 0.6; 95% CI, 0.4-0.9) and highest (AOR, 0.8; 95% CI, 0.6-1.2) tertiles for cholesterol. There was no evidence of effect modification.
CONCLUSIONS: A possible weak effect of increased risk of gastroschisis associated with higher intakes of total fat or saturated fat was found in the NBDPS; however, this did not help to explain why younger aged women are at greater risk of having an infant with this type of birth defect.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Birth Defects Research, Part A: Clinical and Molecular Teratology


Siega-Riz, Anna Maria
Olshan, Andrew F.
Werler, Martha M.
Moore, Cynthia A.
the National Birth Defects Prevention Study,