Purpose: To determine the risk factors for adolescent childbearing in Taiwan within the context of family.
Methods: In this case-control study, the cases were 198 mothers aged < or =19 years with firstborn infants in Taichung City, Taiwan, in 1997. The controls were composed of nonchildbearing adolescents matched with the cases with respect to age and neighborhood for each case. A self-administered structured questionnaire asking about a variety of family factors was used to gather relevant information from the study subjects. Adjusted odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for variables associated with adolescent childbearing were obtained by multiple logistic regression analysis.
Results: There were 162 cases and the same number of controls completing the questionnaire, for a response rate of 81.8%. Compared with the controls, childbearing adolescents were more likely to have all adverse sociodemographic and familial conditions. However, multiple logistic regression analysis showed that adolescents living outside the home (adjusted OR = 2.1, 95% CI 1.0-4.6), single-parent families (adjusted OR = 4.8, 95% CI 1.4-16.1), family dysfunction (adjusted OR = 1.8, 95% CI 1.1-3.1), mother's inadequate education (adjusted OR = 1.4, 95% CI 1.0-2.2), and mother's childbearing in adolescence (adjusted OR = 4.9, 95% CI 2.2-11.0) were the significant risk factors for adolescent childbearing.
Conclusions: Some familial factors contribute significantly to adolescent childbearing in Taiwan, as reported in other countries; these factors should be taken into consideration for further research and development of prevention programs.