The Journal of the American Medical Association has reported a large study of the relationship between maternal body mass index and the risk of fetal death, stillbirth and infant death. The systematic review was conducted to eliminate bias in the study.
Thirty eight studies in forty four publications reported 10,147 fetal deaths, 16,274 stillbirths, 4,311 perinatal deaths, 11.294 neonatal deaths, and 4,983 infant deaths. The risk of death was compared to maternal BMI.
The results were that, as maternal BMI rose from normal (20) to 25 and 30, risk of fetal rose accordingly.
Even a modest increases in maternal BMI were associated with increased risk of fetal death, stillbirth, and neonatal, perinatal and infant death. Weight management guidelines for women who plan pregnancies should take these findings into consideration to reduce their risk.
Source: JAMA 2014:311(15):1536-1546
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