Maternal diseases and isolated orofacial clefts in Hungary

Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol. 2005 Sep;73(9):617-23. doi: 10.1002/bdra.20177.


Background: Isolated orofacial clefts (OFCs) are likely to be caused by gene-environment interaction; therefore, the objective of the current study was to evaluate the possible association between all maternal diseases during pregnancy and isolated cleft lip with or without cleft palate (CL+/-CP) and posterior cleft palate (PCP) in the offspring.

Methods: The database of the large population-based Hungarian Case-Control Surveillance of Congenital Abnormalities, 1980-1996, was evaluated. The database includes 1374 cases with isolated CL+/- CP and 601 with PCP, plus 38,151 matched population controls (without defects) and 20,868 patient controls with other defects. Data collection was based on prospective medical records, retrospective maternal data via a self-reported questionnaire, and home visits of nonresponding families.

Results: An increased risk for isolated CL+/- CP was found for children born to mothers with influenza, common cold, orofacial herpes, and gastroenteritis during pregnancy. Risk for isolated PCP was increased in children of mothers with influenza, sinusitis, and bronchitis. Among chronic maternal diseases, epilepsy and angina pectoris showed a higher prevalence in the mothers of children born with isolated OFCs (cases).

Conclusions: Some maternal diseases are risk factors for the pathogenesis of isolated OFCs. It is worth considering the prevention of possible harmful effects of influenza by vaccination during the expected epidemic period.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cleft Lip / epidemiology
  • Cleft Lip / etiology*
  • Cleft Lip / genetics
  • Cleft Palate / epidemiology
  • Cleft Palate / etiology*
  • Cleft Palate / genetics
  • Databases as Topic
  • Epilepsy / genetics
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hungary / epidemiology
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infections / epidemiology
  • Influenza Vaccines
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control
  • Population Surveillance
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / epidemiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors


  • Influenza Vaccines