Objective: To determine what maternal risk factors that are present during pregnancy are associated with low birthweight (less than 2 500 g).
Methods: A case-control study was conducted with 764 products of single births weighing less than 2 500 g at birth, and 1 437 controls from Hospital Gineco-Obstétrico Provincial in Sancti Spiritus, Cuba, during the 1997-2000 quadrennium. The data were obtained from clinical records, reports of labor, and personal interviews with mothers. A bivariate analysis was performed, and possible confounders were controlled for through dichotomous logistic regression using SPSS. A final multivariate statistical model used was to identify maternal risk factors for low birthweight.
Results: The results of multivariate analysis showed a significant association between low birthweight, the presence of anemia when the pregnancy was detected, urinary tract infection during pregnancy, bronchial asthma, total maternal weight gain under 8 kg during pregnancy, smoking while pregnant, a history of previous children with low birthweight, arterial hypertension since before pregnancy, and inadequate timing of visit for follow-up of initial prenatal care.
Conclusions: On the basis of these results it was concluded that, regardless of the impact measurement method used, it is important to try to reduce the risk factors identified in the study in order to lower the incidence of low birthweight in the province of Sancti Spiritus.