A prospective study on the effects and prevalence of maternal, fetal and placental risk factors on low birth weight neonates

Raghul Jayaseelan, Chidambaranathan Sivaprakasam, Logesvar Palanisamy


Background: Maternal, foetal and placental risk factors have a causative effect in the prematurity and failure to thrive in the early infantile period. Timely diagnosis helps in the anticipation of complications specific to risk factors and managing by impairing their harmful effects on the growth and development of the baby.

Methods: The study was conducted prospectively in Department of Paediatrics, Rajah Muthiah Medical College and Hospital, Chidambaram from January 2018 to June 2018. 361 Low birth weight babies were included. Neonates (n=361) weighing less than 2.5 kilograms with parental informed consent are included, whereas those with severe congenital anomaly, systemic disease or infection were excluded from the study. Various known maternal, placental and foetal risk factors are observed during the course of the study. The gestational age of the neonates was estimated using modified Dubowitz scoring. Other factors like mode of delivery of the babies were also noted. Statistical analysis (descriptive statistics) was done by using Microsoft Word 2010.

Results: Out of 1040 babies born from January to July 2018, 341 babies weight less than 2.5 kg. Out of which 162 (44.88%) babies were born preterm. Of the full term births 52% were low birth weights The risk factors of the neonates are not mutually exclusive. In the present study 28 maternal risk factors were studied. The prevalence of maternal, fetal and placental risk factors was 85.32%, 74.79% and 6.65% respectively.

Conclusions: Period prevalence of low birth weight babies and prematurity is 34.71% and 15.58% respectively. Risk factors are not independent to each other with maternal and foetal risk factors have almost have an effect on nearly three fourths of low birth weight neonates.


Dubowitz scoring, Low birth weight, Linear growth, Weight gain

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