The impact of interpregnancy interval on occurance of preterm births in the present pregnancy

Balaji Thanjavur Elumalai, Vaishnavi Govindarajan


Background: The pregnancy outcomes are influenced by the inter pregnancy intervals. Both short and long inter pregnancy intervals are known to adversely affect the mother and the baby. The main aim of birth spacing was to achieve ideal inter pregnancy intervals and thus to decrease maternal, neonatal morbidity and mortality.

Methods: It is a prospective observational study. In this study, about 500 gravida 2 women who has delivered vaginally in the index pregnancy, with gestational age more than 28 weeks of gestation and with known interpregnancy interval were included in the study. They followed up to to delivery and occurance of preterm births in relation to maternal characteristics and interpregnancy interval were analysed.

Results: Our study showed that Inter pregnancy intervals of 18-24 months were found to have the least number of preterm births when compared to intervals <18 months and >24 months. This association was found to be statistically significant (p value, Pearson chi square 0.0008). This relationship between inter pregnancy intervals and preterm births persisted when stratified according to maternal age, education, residence and BMI.A previous preterm birth was associated with increased risk of recurrent preterm birth (p value -0.034) and was statistically significant. The history of PROM in present pregnancy associated with preterm birth (p value -0.001) and association was statistically significant.

Conclusions: From this study it was found that the 18-24 months birth to pregnancy interval is associated with the least incidence of preterm births.



Interpregnancy interval, Preterm births, Maternal characteristics

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