A comparison of birth outcomes among US-born and non-US-born Hispanic Women in North Carolina

Matern Child Health J. 2006 Jan;10(1):33-8. doi: 10.1007/s10995-005-0028-0.


Objective: To compare birth outcomes between non-US-born and US-born Hispanic women in North Carolina (NC).

Methods: A retrospective comparison of birth outcomes from linked NC birth/death certificate data (1993-1997) for 22,234 Hispanic births by mother's place of birth was conducted.

Results: Mexico-born Hispanic women (58%) had significantly fewer medical risks, tobacco or alcohol use during pregnancy; however, they also had significantly less education and prenatal care than US-born Hispanic women (21%). Infant mortality rate, low birth weight, and prematurity were low and did not differ significantly. Lethal anomalies were the primary cause of infant mortality in non-US-born Hispanics versus Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) in US-born Hispanics.

Conclusions: Despite increased risk factors among US-born women, we found no difference in Hispanic birth outcomes in NC by mother's place of birth. These data contradict national data and may be related to findings of both positive and negative aspects of acculturation in NC.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Birth Certificates
  • Birth Weight
  • Comorbidity
  • Death Certificates
  • Female
  • Gestational Age
  • Hispanic or Latino / classification
  • Hispanic or Latino / education
  • Hispanic or Latino / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Infant Mortality
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Latin America / ethnology
  • Medical Record Linkage
  • North Carolina / epidemiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / epidemiology
  • Pregnancy Complications / ethnology
  • Pregnancy Outcome / epidemiology
  • Pregnancy Outcome / ethnology*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors