Differences in early postnatal morbidity risk by pattern of fetal growth in Argentina

Laura E. Caulfield, Jere D. Haas, José M. Belizán, Kathleen M. Rasmussen, Barry Edmonston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Summary Information on a cohort of 5539 singleton births delivered at term in two hospitals in Rosario, Argentina, was used to examine differences in early postnatal morbidity between small for gestational age (SGA) infants classified by their ponderal index (PI). SGA infants with low PI (SGA‐LPI) were 4.35 (90% CI: 1.50, 12.61) times more likely to have asphyxia, 13.75 (2.48, 76.31) times more likely to have hypoglycae‐mia and 2.32 (1.03, 5.26) times more likely to have respiratory distress (RD) than SGA infants with adequate PI (SGA‐API). The increased risks of asphyxia and hypoglycaemia observed for SGA‐LPI infants diminished, but remained statistically significant after controlling for the infant's gender, birthweight, gestational age and hospital of birth. There was no difference in risk of hyperbilirubinaemia between SGA‐API and SGA‐LPI infants. With the exception of risk of hyperbilirubinaemia, SGA‐API infants carried the same risks of morbidity as non‐SGA infants. The results of the study show that SGA infants do not constitute a homogeneous group with respect to their prospects for early postnatal health and survival. Furthermore, the pattern of differences in morbidity risk between SGA‐API and SGA‐LPI infants observed in this study is consistent with the timing hypothesis for the aetiology of variation in PI among SGA infants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-275
Number of pages13
JournalPaediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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