Objective: The aim of this study was to examine the social conditions of women who never attended prenatal care and to evaluate the perinatal outcome of their newborns.
Study design: A retrospective analysis of uncared pregnancies of women who delivered at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Szeged, Hungary between 1 January 1996 and 31 December 1998. There were 5262 deliveries during this period, of which 54 (1%) had no prenatal care. Matched controls (108 cases) were selected on the basis of maternal age, educational level, the number of gravidity and parity, and marital status.
Results: The mean age of women with out-of-care pregnancies was 27 years+/-3.9; 5 women were under 18, 23 (43%) were unmarried, 5 (9.3%) did not finish elementary school and 35 (65%) had only elementary school education. Compared to the controls there were more in preterm labors (33 versus 14% (OR 3.1, 95% CI 1.4-6.8)), lower birth weight (P<0.001) and more given up for adoption (17 versus 0.9% (OR 21.4, 95% CI 2.63-173.9)).
Conclusion: These data underline the importance of regular prenatal care in the prevention of preterm delivery.