Compared to singletons, multiple births are associated with a substantially-higher risk of maternal and perinatal mortality worldwide. However, little evidence exists on the perinatal profile and risk of neurodevelopmental disabilities among the survivors, especially in developing countries. This cross-sectional study, therefore, set out to determine the adverse perinatal outcomes that are potential markers for neurodevelopmental disabilities in infants with multiple gestations in a developing country. In total, 4,573 mothers, and their 4,718 surviving offspring in an inner-city maternity hospital in Lagos, Nigeria, from May 2005 to December 2007, were recruited. Comparisons of maternal and infant outcomes between single and multiple births were performed using multivariable logistic regression and generalized estimation equation analyses. Odds ratio (OR) and the corresponding 95% confidence interval (CI) for each marker were estimated. Of the 4,573 deliveries, there were 4,416 (96.6%) singletons and 157 (3.4%) multiples, comprising 296 twins and six triplets together (6.4% of all live 4,718 infants). After adjusting for maternal age, ethnicity, occupation, parity, and antenatal care, multiple gestations were associated with increased risks of hypertensive disorders and caesarean delivery. Similarly, after adjusting for potential maternal confounders, multiple births were associated with low five-minute Apgar score (OR: 1.47, 95% CI 1.13-1.93), neonatal sepsis (OR: 2.16, 95% CI 1.28-3.65), severe hyperbilirubinaemia (OR: 1.60, 95% CI 1.00-2.56), and admission to a special-care baby unit (OR: 1.56, 95% CI 1.12-2.17) underpinned by preterm delivery before 34 weeks (OR: 1.91, 95% CI 1.14-3.19), birthweight of less than 2,500 g (OR: 6.45, 95% CI 4.80-8.66), and intrauterine growth restriction (OR: 9.04, 95% CI 6.62-12.34). Overall, the results suggest that, in resource-poor settings, infants of multiple gestations are associated with a significantly-elevated risk of adverse perinatal outcomes. Since these perinatal outcomes are related to the increased risk of later neurodevelopmental disabilities, multiple-birth infants merit close developmental surveillance for timely intervention.
Cross-sectional studies; Multiple gestations; Perinatal outcomes; Retrospective studies; Twins; Nigeria
Children born to teenage mothers are at risk for more physical and cognitive problems than those born to adult mothers. Our objective was to examine differences in size and intelligence between two cohorts of offspring born to adolescent (n = 357) and adult mothers (n = 668) who attended the same prenatal clinic.
Two prospective study cohorts were assessed children from gestation through age 6 years. The adult cohort was studied in the mid-1980’s and the teen cohort was evaluated in the mid-1990’s. Both samples were of low socio-economic status. The same study design and measures allowed us to adjust for the covariates of size and IQ.
Offspring of adolescent mothers had a significantly smaller mean head circumference (5 mm) (HC) and higher body mass index (BMI) than offspring of adult mothers. Offspring of adolescent mothers scored significantly lower than the offspring of adult mothers on the Stanford-Binet (SBIS) composite score (4 points), and the quantitative (6.2 points), verbal reasoning (4.8 points), and short-term memory (3.9 points) area scores. Additional predictors of child IQ were maternal IQ, home environment, race, and number of siblings. When child HC was entered into our final regression model for the SBIS, maternal age and HC significantly predicted the composite score, the verbal reasoning, and short-term memory area scores. A 1 cm decrease in HC predicted a 1 point decrease in the SBIS composite score.
Compared to offspring of adult women, children of adolescent mothers have lower mean scores on cognitive measures, smaller head circumference, and higher BMI. These differences were significant after adjusting for differences between the two groups. Adolescent mothers and their children would benefit from interventions such as parenting support, education about nutritional needs, and advice on enriching the environments of their children.
children; teenage mothers; cognitive development; growth; IQ; BMI
Although the use of pesticides in inner-city homes of the United States is of considerable magnitude, little is known about the potentially adverse health effects of such exposure. Recent animal data suggest that exposure to pesticides during pregnancy and early life may impair growth and neurodevelopment in the offspring. To investigate the relationship among prenatal pesticide exposure, paraoxonase (PON1) polymorphisms and enzyme activity, and infant growth and neurodevelopment, we are conducting a prospective, multiethnic cohort study of mothers and infants delivered at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. In this report we evaluate the effects of pesticide exposure on birth weight, length, head circumference, and gestational age among 404 births between May 1998 and May 2002. Pesticide exposure was assessed by a prenatal questionnaire administered to the mothers during the early third trimester as well as by analysis of maternal urinary pentachlorophenol levels and maternal metabolites of chlorpyrifos and pyrethroids. Neither the questionnaire data nor the pesticide metabolite levels were associated with any of the fetal growth indices or gestational age. However, when the level of maternal PON1 activity was taken into account, maternal levels of chlorpyrifos above the limit of detection coupled with low maternal PON1 activity were associated with a significant but small reduction in head circumference. In addition, maternal PON1 levels alone, but not PON1 genetic polymorphisms, were associated with reduced head size. Because small head size has been found to be predictive of subsequent cognitive ability, these data suggest that chlorpyrifos may have a detrimental effect on fetal neurodevelopment among mothers who exhibit low PON1 activity.
Despite the promotion of breastfeeding as the “ideal” infant feeding method by health experts, breastfeeding continues to be less common among low-income and minority mothers than among other women. This paper investigates how maternal socio-demographic and infant characteristics, household environment, and health behaviors are related to breastfeeding initiation and duration among low-income, inner-city mothers, with a specific focus on differences in breastfeeding behavior by race/ethnicity and nativity status.
Using data from a community-based, longitudinal study of women in Philadelphia, PA (N=1,140), we estimate logistic regression and Cox proportional hazard models to predict breastfeeding initiation and duration.
Both foreign-born black mothers and Hispanic mothers (most of whom were foreign-born) were significantly more likely to breastfeed their infants than non-Hispanic white women, findings that were partly explained by foreign-born and Hispanic mothers’ prenatal intention to breastfeed. In contrast to previous studies, we also found that native-born black women were more likely to breastfeed than non-Hispanic white women.
Our findings suggest that when poor whites and African Americans are similarly situated in an inner-city context, the disparity in their behavior with respect to infant feeding is not as distinct as documented in national surveys. Breastfeeding was also more common among low-income immigrant black women than white or native-born black mothers.
Breastfeeding; Inner-city; Nativity; Race/Ethnicity; SES
Low birth weight (BW), small head circumference, reduced length, increased preterm births and neuro-endocrine dysfunctions are among known consequences of smoking during pregnancy. Few studies have linked leptin to clinical features of growth restriction associated with maternal smoking and explored interaction with other determinants of size at birth, such as gender.
Cord serum leptin concentrations were measured in 1215 term infants born to Caucasian mothers at completion of uneventful pregnancy. Serum concentrations were related to BW, gestational length, gender and maternal smoking and interaction with other determinants of size at birth evaluated.
Smoking was more frequent in younger (P<0.001) and shorter mothers (P=0.03) from lower socio-economic groups (SEGPs) (P<0.001). Infants born to smokers were lighter (190 g less), shorter and with smaller head circumference. Cord serum leptin concentrations were higher in girls (9.8 s.d. 7.6 ng/ml) than in boys (7.05 s.d. 5.8 ng/ml) (P<0.001). Boys were heavier (BW 3.52 s.d. 0.49 kg) than girls (3.39 s.d. 0.44 kg) (P<0.001), but girls had greater skinfold thickness measurements (sub-scapular and quadriceps skinfold thicknesses 5.5 s.d. 1.6 mm and 7.6 s.d. 1.9 mm respectively; boys 5.3 s.d. 1.6 vs 7.24±1.90 mm, P<0.001 respectively). Multivariate analyses showed gender (P<0.001), BW SDS (P<0.001), gestational length (P<0.001) and maternal smoking (P<0.042) as factors that influenced umbilical cord serum leptin concentrations in newborns.
Maternal smoking restrains foetal growth through placental vascular effects, and likely also via associated effects on leptin metabolism. More studies are needed to determine the influence that maternal smoking may have on placental syncytiotrophoblast and foetal adipose tissue.
Fifteen normal children with large heads (circumference greater than 0.5 cm above the 98th centile) were studied. CAT scans were pefrormed to exclude hydrocephalus, and ventricular size was compared with that of hydrocephalic children. In 11 of the 13 families in which the parents' heads were measured, one parent (10 fathers and one mother) was found to have a large head, as had 6 of 17 siblings. Head circumference at birth was large in 7 of 10 babies and rate of head growth was excessive in 8 of 13. Skull x-ray showed suture diastasis in 7 infants. These families have a benign familial megalencephaly. It is important to recognise this so as to avoid unnecessary investigation and anxiety about normal children with large heads.
Little is known about the antecedents of microcephaly in early childhood among children born at extremely low gestational age.
To identify some of the antecedents of microcephaly at age two years among children born before the 28th week of gestation.
Observational cohort study.
1004 infants born before the 28th week of gestation.
Head circumference Z-scores of <−2 and ≥−2, <−1.
Risk of microcephaly and a less severely restricted head circumference decreased monotonically with increasing gestational age. After adjusting for gestational age and other potential confounders, the risk of microcephaly at age 2 years was increased if microcephaly was present at birth [odds ratio: 8.8 ((95% confidence interval: 3.7, 21)], alpha hemolytic Streptococci were recovered from the placenta parenchyma [2.9 (1.2, 6.9)], the child was a boy [2.8 (1.6, 4.9)], and the child's mother was not married [2.5 (1.5, 4.3)]. Antecedents associated not with microcephaly, but with a less extreme reduction in head circumference were recovery of Propionibacterium sp from the placenta parenchyma [2.9 (1.5, 5.5)], tobacco exposure [2.0 (1.4, 3.0)], and increased syncytial knots in the placenta [2.0 (1.2, 3.2)].
Although microcephaly at birth predicts a small head circumference at 2 years among children born much before term, pregnancy and maternal characteristics provide supplemental information about the risk of a small head circumference years later. Two findings appear to be novel. Tobacco exposure during pregnancy, and organisms recovered from the placenta predict reduced head circumference at age two years.
Emerging evidence from a recent pilot universal newborn hearing screening (UNHS) programme suggests that the burden of obstetric complications associated with mode of delivery is not limited to maternal and perinatal mortality but may also include outcomes that undermine optimal early childhood development of the surviving newborns. However, the potential pathways for this association have not been reported particularly in the context of a resource-poor setting. This study therefore set out to establish the pattern of delivery and the associated neonatal outcomes under a UNHS programme.
A cross-sectional study in which all consenting mothers who delivered in an inner-city tertiary maternity hospital in Lagos, Nigeria from May 2005 to December 2007 were enrolled during the UNHS programme. Socio-demographic, obstetric and neonatal factors independently associated with vaginal, elective and emergency caesarean deliveries were determined using multinomial logistic regression analyses.
Of the 4615 mothers enrolled, 2584 (56.0%) deliveries were vaginal, 1590 (34.4%) emergency caesarean and 441 (9.6%) elective caesarean section. Maternal age, parity, social class and all obstetric factors including lack of antenatal care, maternal HIV and multiple gestations were associated with increased risk of emergency caesarean delivery compared with vaginal delivery. Only parity, lack of antenatal care and prolonged/obstructed labour were associated with increased risk of emergency compared with elective caesarean delivery. Infants delivered by vaginal method or by emergency caesarean section were more likely to be associated with the risk of sensorineural hearing loss but less likely to be associated with hyperbilirubinaemia compared with infants delivered by elective caesarean section. Emergency caesarean delivery was also associated with male gender, low five-minute Apgar scores and admission into special care baby unit compared with vaginal or elective caesarean delivery.
The vast majority of caesarean delivery in this population occur as emergencies and are associated with socio-demographic factors as well as several obstetric complications. Mode of delivery is also associated with the risk of sensorineural hearing loss and other adverse birth outcomes that lie on the causal pathways for potential developmental deficits.
Three racial groups of mothers and their newborn babies-- North European 75, Negro 75, and "Indian" Asian 37--were matched for parity, gestational age, sex, maternal age, maternal smoking habits, and social class. Multiple anthropometric measurements, including skinfold thickness, limb circumferences, and various linear measurements were made on the mothers and their infants to determine the effects of race and smoking on fetal size. Indian-Asian mothers, though shorter and lighter than Europeans and Negroes, had similar skinfold thickness and weight: height2 ratios and gained as much weight during pregnancy. Their infants, however, were lighter than the others, and had smaller head and limb circumferences, although their linear measurements were the same. Negro and European infants were almost identical in size. We found no effect on any of the fetal measurements which could be attributed to smoking.
Vaccine-preventable diseases are responsible for severe rates of morbidity and mortality in Africa. Despite the availability of appropriate vaccines for routine use on infants, vaccine-preventable diseases are highly endemic throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Widespread disparities in the coverage of immunization programmes persist between and within rural and urban areas, regions and communities in Nigeria. This study assessed the individual- and community-level explanatory factors associated with child immunization differentials between migrant and non-migrant groups.
The proportion of children that received each of the eight vaccines in the routine immunization schedule in Nigeria was estimated. Multilevel multivariable regression analysis was performed using a nationally representative sample of 6029 children from 2735 mothers aged 15-49 years and nested within 365 communities. Odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals were used to express measures of association between the characteristics. Variance partition coefficients and Wald statistic i.e. the ratio of the estimate to its standard error were used to express measures of variation.
Individual- and community contexts are strongly associated with the likelihood of receiving full immunization among migrant groups. The likelihood of full immunization was higher for children of rural non-migrant mothers compared to children of rural-urban migrant mothers. Findings provide support for the traditional migration perspectives, and show that individual-level characteristics, such as, migrant disruption (migration itself), selectivity (demographic and socio-economic characteristics), and adaptation (health care utilization), as well as community-level characteristics (region of residence, and proportion of mothers who had hospital delivery) are important in explaining the differentials in full immunization among the children.
Migration is an important determinant of child immunization uptake. This study stresses the need for community-level efforts at increasing female education, measures aimed at alleviating poverty for residents in urban and remote rural areas, and improving the equitable distribution of maternal and child health services.
In the human species, twin is a type of multiple birth in which the mother gives birth to two offspring from the same pregnancy. The occurrence and frequency of twinning, however, varies across human populations. The maternal age, socio-environmental factors, increase in the use of contraceptives, the race of human population, increase in the spontaneous abortion rate, and seasonal variations are among the factors that could influence twinning rate. Information on twinning rates in southwest Nigeria is limited.
This study presents information on the frequency of twinning, as well as its analysis by maternal age, in four urban settings in southwest Nigeria. This is with the aim of extending current knowledge on the frequency of twinning in southwest Nigeria and contributing to the demographic studies in the country.
MATERIALS AND METHODS:
Data on single births and twin births from January 1995 to December 2004 were collected from the Oyo State General Hospital (OSGH), Wesley Guild Hospital (WGH), Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital (OAUTH), and Ekiti State Specialist Hospital (ESSH) in Ogbomoso, Ilesa, Ile-Ife, and Ado-Ekiti respectively. These were analyzed by year and maternal age groups of 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, and 45-49 years according to the standard method.
A frequency of twin births of 46.5 per 1000 deliveries and 46.2 per 1000 deliveries was recorded for Ilesa and Ile-Ife respectively. The frequency recorded for Ogbomoso and Ado-Ekiti was 38.5 and 22.1 per 1000 deliveries respectively. The overall average frequency of 40.2 per 1000 deliveries for the four hospitals ranks among the highest recorded rates of twin births in the world. The maternal age group of 25-29 years had the highest occurrence of twin births, while the lowest was recorded in the 45-49 years age group.
This analysis reveals high incidence of twinning in the studied areas and supports previous assertion that the southwestern part of Nigeria has the highest twinning rate in the country and in the whole world. It is our opinion that diet, maternal history of twinning, and some socio-environmental factors may have influenced the results.
Diet; maternal influence; southwest Nigeria; twinning rate
Breastfeeding is an unequalled way of providing ideal food for the infants. The benefits of breastfeeding practices to infants and mothers are well documented. However, information on breastfeeding practices and its effect on body mass index (BMI) of mothers are scarce, particularly in Ekiti State of Nigeria. Therefore, the present study is designed to assess breastfeeding practices and its association with BMI of mothers. A descriptive and cross-sectional study was conducted among breastfeeding mothers that attended postnatal clinic of the state specialist hospitals and maternity centers in the study location. The specialist hospital and two-third of the nine maternity centers were purposively selected because of their health facilities and personnel. The mother-child pairs (200 respondents) were randomly selected from the study locations. Information on demographic characteristic, socio-economic parameters, nutritional knowledge of breastfeeding and dietary intakes of mothers were collected using questionnaires. BMI of mothers was determined as described by World Health Organization. Age distribution of mothers was between 25-34 years; and almost half of respondents had good educational background and were engaged in different occupations. The respondent monthly income ranged between = N = 3500 - 26000 ($26.92 - $200); and their dietary intakes varied between starchy and protein-based food. The result also showed that the respondent consumed enough nutrients to meet up the recommended daily allowance for protein, carbohydrate, fat, zinc, magnesium, sodium and phosphorous requirements. The BMI classifications showed that over three-fifth of respondents were normal, while the remaining were underweight (6%) and overweight/obese (26.5%). Also, large proportion of respondents engaged in exclusive breastfeeding and with good knowledge of breastfeeding practices. Statistically, exclusive breastfeeding practices had no correlation between the BMI and frequency of breastfeeding. The study, therefore, concluded that mothers had good knowledge of breastfeeding practice; and that there was no association between breastfeeding practices and BMI.
Mothers; breastfeeding practices; body mass index
The relation between the nutrition of the mother and that of her baby was assessed in a south Indian community where malnutrition is common and women do not smoke. Unselected mothers and their infants of over 37 weeks' gestation were studied in two groups: those who paid for their care (150) and a poorer group who did not (172). There were significnat differences between the paying and non-paying groups in maternal triceps skinfold thickness, infant weight, and infant length. Overall there was a significant positive correlation between maternal triceps thickness and infant weight, length, and triceps and subscapular skinfold thickness. The correlation with the infant head circumference was less significant. These findings are further evidence that the nutrition of the mother has an important effect on the nutrition of her baby and that malnutrition is an important reason why Indian babies are lighter than European ones.
The results of a follow-up study of infants of diabetic mothers are presented. The antenatal care of all such mothers was supervised in a combined clinic by obstetricians and physicians, and good diabetic control was achieved in most of them. 51 mothers delivered 73 infants, all liveborn, between the years 1964 and 1972 inclusive at Hammersmith Hospital. There were no fetal deaths. 66 infants survived the neonatal period, and 63 the first 2 years of life. 51 children, including all those seriously ill in the neonatal period, could be traced. Detailed neurological and general examinations including skinfold measurements were made, and the IQ measured. Four children were found to have major handicaps. These were severe deafness, epilepsy, low IQ, and myopia. No other neurological abnormalities were detected, and the distribution of full-scale IQs was normal. The distribution of height and head circumference centiles was near normal, but an increased number of children had weights above the 90th centile. No significant congenital malformations were found in these 51 survivors, and none has so far developed diabetes.
Neural tube defects (NTDs) are common, serious malformations with a complex etiology that suggests involvement of both genetic and environmental factors. The authors evaluated maternal or offspring folate-related gene variants and interactions between the gene variants and maternal intake of folates on the risk of NTDs in their offspring. A case-control study was conducted on mothers and/or their fetuses and infants who were born in California from 1999–2003 with an NTD (cases n = 222, including 24 mother-infant pairs) or without a major malformation (controls n = 454, including 186 mother-infant pairs). Maternal intake of folates was assessed by food frequency questionnaire and genotyping was performed on samples from mothers and infants. For mothers in the lowest folate-intake group, risk of NTDs in offspring was significantly decreased for maternal MTHFR SNPs rs1476413, rs1801131 and rs1801133 (odds ratio (OR) = 0.55, 80% confidence interval (CI): 0.20, 1.48; OR = 0.58, 80% CI: 0.24, 1.43; OR = 0.69, 80% CI: 0.41, 1.17, respectively), and TYMS SNPs rs502396 and rs699517 (OR= 0.91, 80% CI: 0.53, 1.56; OR = 0.70, 80% CI: 0.38, 1.29). A gene-only effect was observed for maternal SHMT1 SNP rs669340 (OR = 0.69, 95% CI: 0.49, 0.96). When there was low maternal folate intake, risk of NTDs was significantly increased for infant MTHFD1 SNPs rs2236224, rs2236225 and rs11627387 (OR = 1.58, 80% CI: 0.99, 2.51; OR = 1.53, 80% CI: 0.95, 2.47; OR = 4.25, 80% CI: 2.33, 7.75, respectively) and SHMT1 SNP rs12939757 (OR = 2.01, 80% CI: 1.20, 3.37), but decreased for TYMS SNP rs2847153 (OR = 0.73, 80% CI: 0.37, 1.45). Although power to detect interaction effects was low for this birth defects association study, the gene-folate interactions observed in this study represent preliminary findings that will be useful for informing future studies on the complex etiology of NTDs.
Congenital Abnormalities; Folic Acid; Genetic Association Studies; Molecular Epidemiology; Neural Tube Defects; Maternal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena; Nervous System Malformations; Nutrigenomics
This study was conducted to compare quality of mother-infant interactions during feeding in infants with or without iron deficiency anemia (IDA).
Infants and caregivers were screened at their 9- to 10-month-old health maintenance visits at an inner-city clinic in Detroit. Those who were full-term and healthy received a venipuncture blood sample to assess iron status. Of the 77 infants who met final iron status criteria, 68 infants and mothers were videotaped during feeding interaction at the Child Development Research Laboratory. The quality of mother-infant interaction during feeding was scored on the Nursing Child Assessment Feeding Scale (NCAFS). Twenty-five infants with IDA (HB < 110 g/L and at least 2 abnormal iron measures) were compared to 43 non-anemic infants (HB ≥ 110 g/L) using ANOVA and GLM models with covariate control.
Mothers of IDA infants responded with significantly less sensitivity to infant cues and less cognitive and social-emotional growth fostering behavior than mothers of non-anemic infants. The pattern of results was similar for scales of contingent behaviors. The magnitude of the differences in maternal ratings was large (0.8-1.0 SD after covariate adjustment). IDA infants were rated significantly lower on clarity of cues and overall (effect sizes 0.5 SD).
IDA in infancy was associated with less optimal mother-infant interactions during feeding. Future interventions might target feeding interaction and consider effects on infant iron status and developmental/behavioral outcomes among IDA infants, as well as infant feeding practices per se.
Iron-deficiency anemia; mother-infant interaction; NCAFS; feeding
Schizophrenia is a neurodevelopmental disorder associated with abnormalities of brain structure and white matter, although little is known about when these abnormalities arise. This study was conducted to identify structural brain abnormalities in the prenatal and neonatal periods associated with genetic risk for schizophrenia.
Prenatal ultrasound scans and neonatal structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and diffusion tensor imaging were prospectively obtained in the offspring of mothers with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder (N=26) and matched comparison mothers without psychiatric illness (N=26). Comparisons were made for prenatal lateral ventricle width and head circumference, for neonatal intracranial, CSF, gray matter, white matter, and lateral ventricle volumes, and for neonatal diffusion properties of the genu and splenium of the corpus callosum and corticospinal tracts.
Relative to the matched comparison subjects, the offspring of mothers with schizophrenia did not differ in prenatal lateral ventricle width or head circumference. Overall, the high-risk neonates had nonsignificantly larger intracranial, CSF, and lateral ventricle volumes. Subgroup analysis revealed that male high-risk infants had significantly larger intracranial, CSF, total gray matter, and lateral ventricle volumes; the female high-risk neonates were similar to the female comparison subjects. There were no group differences in white matter diffusion tensor properties.
Male neonates at genetic risk for schizophrenia had several larger than normal brain volumes, while females did not. To the authors' knowledge, this study provides the first evidence, in the context of its limitations, that early neonatal brain development may be abnormal in males at genetic risk for schizophrenia.
To determine whether levels of blood lead during gestation and infancy that are below the CDC action of level of 10 μg/dL affect infant growth, we studied 211 disadvantaged mother-infant pairs from Albany, NY. Mothers’ lead levels were low (2nd trimester x=2.8 μg/dL) as were infants’ (x= 3.3 μg/dL at 6 months; 6.4 μg/dL at 12 months). Multiple linear regression analyses showed that 2nd trimester lead levels were related to reduced head circumference at 6 and 12 months. Infants of mothers with 2nd trimester lead at or above the median (≥ 3 ug/dL) exhibited negative associations between blood lead and head circumference at 6 and 12 months, and with weight-for-age, weight-for-length and upper arm circumference at 6 months, but those below the median did not. Infants’ 6 month lead level was related to head circumference at 12 months in the total sample, and in the sub-sample of infants whose blood lead was above the infants’ 6 month blood lead median. Infants also were grouped by changes in their relative blood lead status, i.e., above vs. below the median, from 2nd trimester to 12 months of age. Infants whose lead levels changed from above to below the median were larger than infants whose lead levels went from below to above the median. The results suggest that lead may affect some dimensions of infant growth at levels below 10 ug/dL, but effects of lead levels less than 3 ug/dL are not evident in this sample.
lead; children; growth; development; height; weight; head circumference
The extent to which young women’s risk of adolescent pregnancy is associated with having a mother who was a teenage parent, a sister who was a teenage parent or both is not known.
A sample of 127 Latina and black adolescent females completed in-depth surveys at three time points between 1994 and 2000. Logistic regression analyses were used to examine whether socioeconomic factors, mothers’ parenting characteristics and certain sibling relationship qualities explain the association between a family history of teenage births and young women’s risk of pregnancy.
Compared with young women with no family history of teenage births, young women whose sister had had a teenage birth and those whose sister and mother both had had teenage births were significantly more likely to experience a teenage pregnancy (odds ratios, 4.8 and 5.1, respectively). Young women who had only a sister who had had a teenage birth had greater odds of pregnancy than young women who had only a mother who had had a teenage birth (4.5). Having both a mother and a sister who had had teenage births was independently associated with an elevated risk of pregnancy (3.7), even after controlling for socioeconomic and mothers’ parenting characteristics. Frequent companionship with an older sister was associated with increased odds of teenage pregnancy (4.5); frequent conflict with an older sister who had had a teenage birth was marginally associated with decreased odds of the outcome (0.3).
Pregnancy prevention interventions targeting young women according to maternal and sibling teenage birth histories may be effective.
Two hundred and two primarily African American/Caribbean children (classified by maternal report and infant meconium as 38 heavier, 74 lighter and 89 not cocaine-exposed) were measured repeatedly from birth to age 8 years to assess whether there is an independent effect of prenatal cocaine exposure on physical growth patterns. Children with fetal alcohol syndrome identifiable at birth were excluded. At birth, cocaine and alcohol exposures were significantly and independently associated with lower weight, length and head circumference in cross-sectional multiple regression analyses. The relationship over time of pre-natal exposures to weight, height, and head circumference was then examined by multiple linear regression using mixed linear models including covariates: child’s gestational age, gender, ethnicity, age at assessment, current caregiver, birth mother’s use of alcohol, marijuana and tobacco during the pregnancy and pre-pregnancy weight (for child’s weight) and height (for child’s height and head circumference). The cocaine effects did not persist beyond infancy in piecewise linear mixed models, but a significant and independent negative effect of pre-natal alcohol exposure persisted for weight, height, and head circumference. Catch-up growth in cocaine-exposed infants occurred primarily by 6 months of age for all growth parameters, with some small fluctuations in growth rates in the preschool age range but no detectable differences between heavier versus unexposed nor lighter versus unexposed thereafter.
Cocaine; Alcohol; Pregnancy; Growth; Children
For 10 weeks, a sample of 105 postpartum African-American clients of three inner-city clinics, were recruited for this nine-month prospective study. Data from 54 mother-infant dyads were used to explore the associations between maternal perceptions of infant body size and the development of adiposity at six- to seven months of age. Correlations, chi-square, paired t-test, ANOVA, and logistic regression analyses were performed. Quantitative assessments of BMI using weight and length measures and qualitative assessments of body size perceptions using questionnaires, silhouette, and ranking scales were conducted. At six- to seven months of age, 40% of the infants were above the 85th percentile and 31% were above the 95th percentile of the NCHS standards for weight for height. Maternal perception of infant body size was positively correlated with early introduction of nonmilk foods. Significantly, more infants perceived as small were introduced to nonmilk foods earlier, compared to infants perceived as average, p=0.03. Additionally, it was observed that the earlier the introduction of nonmilk foods, the greater the infant's BMI at six- to seven months of age (r=0.59, p=0.02). Finally, one-third of mothers were obese with BMI's exceeding 30, and 31.1% were overweight with BMI's between 25 and 30.
A prospective study aimed to suggest easy and simple reproducible ventricular site that will be basic measurement plane and normal dimension determined, correlated to sizes of infants for comparative evaluation of hydrocephalous infants and should be reproducible in follow-up.
Materials and Methods:
A prospective study done in University of Benin Teaching Hospital Benin, Nigeria. This study used 50 consecutive infants with Ultrasound scan (US) diagnosis of hydrocephalus and a control group of 50 US normal from 1st January 2007 to 30th June 2008. The infants were scan through the mid-patent anterior fontanelle in sagittal, and transverse planes with minor angulations to properly outline the ventricles and the position of measurement determined at the foramen of Monro of lateral ventricles and the diameter measured. The infants’ weight, crown-heel length, and head circumference were measured and body mass index (BMI) calculated and correlated to lateral ventricular measurement. Data analysis was conducted using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS Inc, USA), Version 11.0.
There was no statistically sex and age-related difference. There is statistically comparative high mean weight and height and lower BMI in hydrocephalic infants as against the control group (P < 0.001). The mean head circumference for hydrocephalus was 45.6 (± 10.5 standard deviation [SD]), whereas the control group was 35.9 (± 2.7 SD) with P < 0.001. The mean diameter of the anterior horn of left and right lateral ventricles at the level of foramen of Monro in hydrocephalic subjects is 18.4 mm ± 14.3 mm and 20.1 mm ± 16.8 mm with median diameter of 14.1 mm and 15.2 mm, respectively, whereas control group is 2.5 mm ± 0.6 mm and 2.5 mm ± 0.7 mm with median diameter of 2.5 mm and 2.4 mm, respectively.
Transfontanelle US was found highly useful in investigation of hydrocephalous in infant.
Anterior fontanelle; brain; hydrocephalus; ultrasound; ventricle
By random sampling of all births occurring in Hamilton, Ont. over an 18-month period the percentile distributions of the newborn infants' weight, length, and head and chest circumferences were determined. The resulting standards may be used in the clinical evaluation of size for gestational age. The smoothed 50th percentile values for newborns of 40 weeks gestational age were as follows for boys and girls respectively: birth weight 3530 and 3355 g, crown-heel length 52.0 and 51.3 cm, head circumference 35.2 and 34.4 cm, and chest circumference 33.4 and 32.8 cm. The mother's height averaged 160.8 +/- 6.1 cm and her weight before the pregnancy 59.2 +/- 10.5 kg. The prevalence of cigarette smoking during pregnancy was 34.8%.
Mother-infant bonding is universal to all mammalian species. In this review, we describe the manner in which reciprocal communication between the mother and infant leads to mother-infant bonding in rodents. In rats and mice, mother-infant bond formation is reinforced by various social stimuli, such as tactile stimuli and ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) from the pups to the mother, and feeding and tactile stimulation from the mother to the pups. Some evidence suggests that mother and infant can develop a cross-modal sensory recognition of their counterpart during this bonding process. Neurochemically, oxytocin in the neural system plays a pivotal role in each side of the mother-infant bonding process, although the mechanisms underlying bond formation in the brains of infants has not yet been clarified. Impairment of mother-infant bonding, that is, deprivation of social stimuli from the mother, strongly influences offspring sociality, including maternal behavior toward their own offspring in their adulthood, implying a “non-genomic transmission of maternal environment,” even in rodents. The comparative understanding of cognitive functions between mother and infants, and the biological mechanisms involved in mother-infant bonding may help us understand psychiatric disorders associated with mother-infant relationships.
mother-infant; bonding; oxytocin; maternal behavior
Fetal growth restriction is associated with metabolic derangements in the newborn, impaired functioning in childhood and chronic diseases in adulthood. Differences between ethnic groups with respect to fetal growth may result in the misclassification of constitutionally small or large babies as having abnormal growth for their gestational age. We have developed intrauterine growth charts based on precise measurements of newborns whose parents were both of European, Chinese or South Asian ethnicity.
Weight, length and head circumference were measured in 2695 infants born to healthy non-smoking mothers in British Columbia at 37–41 completed weeks of gestation. Gestational age was confirmed by ultrasound before 20 weeks of gestation. Weight was measured by digital scale, length by stadiometer and head circumference by firm plastic tape measures. Means and 95% confidence intervals were compared among newborns grouped by ethnicity and sex. Smoothed graphs were constructed for visual interpretation.
At 40 weeks, infants of European descent (“European” infants) weighed 225.5 g more on average than infants of Chinese descent (“Chinese” infants) (p < 0.001) and 254.6 g more than infants of South Asian descent (“South Asian” infants) (p < 0.001). The mean difference in birth weight between Chinese and South Asian infants (19.1 g) was not statistically significant. The mean length of European infants at 40 weeks of gestation was 0.89 cm greater than that of Chinese infants (p < 0.001). Differences in mean length between European and South Asian babies or between Chinese and South Asian babies was not statistically significant. The mean head circumferance of European babies was 0.50 cm larger than that of Chinese babies at 40 weeks (p < 0.001) but did not differ significantly from that of South Asian babies. South Asian and Chinese babies had similar mean head circumferences at 40 weeks. When differences in mean birth weight, length and head circumference were examined within boys and girls, the observed differences according to ethnicity remained statistically significant.
Important differences in weight, length and head circumferences are reported among babies according to ethnicity. The use of sex- and ethnicity-specific growth charts may prevent the misclassification of newborns as small or large for gestational age.