Maternal Height and Preterm Birth: A Study on 192,432 Swedish Women
2016 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 11, no 4, e0154304Article in journal (Refereed) PublishedText
Background There is increasing evidence that lower maternal stature is associated with shorter gestational length in the offspring. We examined the association between maternal height and the likelihood of delivering preterm babies in a large and homogeneous cohort of Swedish women. Methods This study covers antenatal data from the Swedish Medical Birth Register on 192,432 women (aged 26.0 years on average) born at term, from singleton pregnancies, and of Nordic ethnicity. Continuous associations between women's heights and the likelihood of preterm birth in the offspring were evaluated. Stratified analyses were also carried out, separating women into different height categories. Results Every cm decrease in maternal stature was associated with 0.2 days shortening of gestational age in the offspring (p<0.0001) and increasing odds of having a child born preterm (OR 1.03), very preterm (OR 1.03), or extremely preterm (OR 1.04). Besides, odds of all categories of preterm birth were highest among the shortest women but lowest among the tallest mothers. Specifically, women of short stature (<= 155 cm or <=-2.0 SDS below the population mean) had greater odds of having preterm (OR 1.65) or very preterm (OR 1.47) infants than women of average stature (-0.5 to 0.5 SDS). When compared to women of tall stature (>= 19 cm), mothers of short stature had even greater odds of giving birth to preterm (OR 2.07) or very preterm (OR 2.16) infants. Conclusions Among Swedish women, decreasing height was associated with a progressive increase in the odds of having an infant born preterm. Maternal short stature is a likely contributing factor to idiopathic preterm births worldwide, possibly due to maternal anatomical constraints.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 11, no 4, e0154304
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-297364DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0154304ISI: 000374898500182PubMedID: 27100080OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-297364DiVA: diva2:941845