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Maternal prepregnancy nutritional status influences newborn size and mode of delivery

1 Department of Anthropology, University of Vienna, Austria
2 Danube Hospital, SMZ Ost, Vienna, Austria

The coexistence of underweight and obesity is commonly called the double burden of malnutrition, a phenomenon which can be found in most countries worldwide. During pregnancy maternal underweight as well as obesity have a profound impact on fetal growth patterns and consequently pregnancy outcome. In the present study the effects of maternal underweight as well as obesity on fetal growth and consequently newborn size were tested in a sample of 9214 term births which took place at Vienna Austria. It could be shown that maternal prepregnancy weight status was significantly positively associated with maternal age. Furthermore maternal prepregnancy weight status has a marked influence on fetal growth. With increasing maternal weight status birth weight, birth length, newborn head dimensions and acromial circumference increased significantly. Maternal obesity enhances fetal growth and increases the risk of giving birth to a large for gestational age offspring. In contrast underweight increases the risk of giving birth to a small for gestational age offspring. Additionally morbid obesity was positively associated with risk of caesarean section.
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© 2018 the Author(s), licensee AIMS Press. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licese (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0)

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