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Selected Preconception Health Indicators and Birth Weight Disparities in a National Study

Citation

Strutz, Kelly L.; Richardson, Liana J.; & Hussey, Jon M. (2014). Selected Preconception Health Indicators and Birth Weight Disparities in a National Study. Women's Health Issues, 24(1), e89-97. PMCID: PMC3910115

Abstract

BACKGROUND: This analysis explored the effect of timing, sequencing, and change in preconception health across adolescence and young adulthood on racial/ethnic disparities in birth weight in a diverse national cohort of young adult women. METHODS: Data came from Waves I (1994-1995), III (2001-2002), and IV (2007-2008) of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. Eligibility was restricted to all singleton live births to female non-Hispanic White, non-Hispanic Black, Mexican-origin Latina, or Asian/Pacific Islander participants (n = 3,014) occurring between the Wave III (ages 18-26 years) and IV (ages 24-32 years) interviews. Birth weight was categorized into low (<2,500 g), normal (2,500-4,000 g), and macrosomic (>4,000 g). Preconception health indicators were cigarette smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, overweight or obesity, and inadequate physical activity, measured in adolescence (Wave I, ages 11-19 years) and early adulthood (Wave III) and combined into four-category variables to capture the timing and sequencing of exposure. FINDINGS: Measures of preconception health did not explain the Black-White disparity in low birth weight, which increased after adjustment for confounders (odds ratio [OR], 2.17; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.33-3.53) and effect modification by overweight/obesity (OR, 3.58; 95% CI, 1.65-7.78). A positive association between adult-onset overweight/obesity and macrosomia was modified by race (OR, 3.83; 95% CI, 1.02-14.36 for Black women). CONCLUSIONS: This longitudinal analysis provides new evidence on preconception health and racial/ethnic disparities in birth weight. Specifically, it indicates that interventions focused on prevention of overweight/obesity and maintenance of healthy weight during the transition to adulthood, especially among Black females, may be warranted.

URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.whi.2013.10.001

Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published

2014

Journal Title

Women's Health Issues

Author(s)

Strutz, Kelly L.
Richardson, Liana J.
Hussey, Jon M.

PMCID

PMC3910115