Mothers and their pregnancies: A comparison of three population-based cohorts in Southern Brazil

Iná S. Santos, Aluísio J D Barros, Alicia Matijasevich, Elaine Tornasi, Ricardo S. Medeiros, Marlos R. Domingues, Andréa D. Bertoldi, Fernando C. Barros, Cesar G. Victora

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Mothers from the 1982, 1993 and 2004 Pelotas birth cohorts were compared across biological, socioeconomic, demographic and reproductive characteristics. Women in the 2004 cohort had higher levels of education, gained more weight during pregnancy, and were heavier at the beginning and end of their pregnancy than mothers who gave birth in 1993 and 1982. There was an important increase in obesity rates (body mass index > 30kg/m2) over the 22 years of the study. Mean parity decreased from 1.3 in 1982 to 1.1 in 2004, with a growing proportion of primiparas and a decline in the proportion of women with ≥ 4 children. The mean birth interval increased from 33.5 months in 1982 to 65.7 in 2004. Smoking during pregnancy decreased from 35.6% in 1982 to 25.1% in 2004. As with other characteristics, the change in smoking status differed according to income, with higher reductions among the wealthiest (from 24.9% to 8.7%) than among the poorest mothers (from 43.7% to 33.6%). In general terms, between 1993 and 2004 there was a decrease in the prevalence of maternal risk factors for unfavorable perinatal outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCadernos de saúde pública / Ministério da Saúde, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública.
Issue numberSUPPL.3
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Cohort studies
  • Parity
  • Reproductive medicine
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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