Low birth weight at term and maternal contributing factors in community based hospital Korangi, Karachi.
Low birth weight is a key determinant of infant survival, health and development. Low birth weight infants are at a greater risk of morbidity and mortality than an infant of normal birth weight and create a substantial strain on the healthcare system. Objectives: To determine the frequency of low birth weight at term and maternal contributing risk factors in women attending antenatal clinic at Creek General Hospital Korangi, Karachi. Study Design: Descriptive cross sectional study. Setting: Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Creek General Hospital, United Medical and Dental College Karachi. Period: From May 2017 to April 2018. Material & Methods: Those women who gave birth to babies with less than 2500gm at term, were included in the study to ascertain the frequency and risk factors of low birth weight including age, parity, booking status for antenatal care, pre-pregnancy BMI, history of tobacco intake, medical disorders arising in pregnancy like anemia, pregnancy induced hypertension and gestational diabetes mellitus, birth weight and fetal gender. The data was analyzed on SPSS software. Results: The prevalence of term low birth weight was 22%. Percentage of low birth weight babies among teenage mothers was 72.8%, among the studied mothers 67.4% were primipara, 91.5% had standard antenatal care, Pre-pregnancy BMI was found to be normal in 93% of mothers, 9 mothers (7%) had history of tobacco/ betel nut chewing habit. In this study, iron deficiency anemia was found to be most significant factor leading to LBW babies (62 %). 12% and 8% of mothers were diagnosed with Pregnancy induced Hypertension and Gestational Diabetes mellitus respectively. Regarding fetal gender, 68 were females (52.7%) and 61 (47.3%) were males. Conclusion: Low Birth Weight is an important contributing risk factor for perinatal mortality and morbidity in Pakistan. Anemia was found to be most significant risk factor leading to Low birth weight in our study.