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Low birth weight (LBW) at birth may be the outcome of either preterm birth (before 37 weeks of gestation) or retarded fetal (intrauterine) growth. By National Family Health Servey- 3(NFHS) report, proportions of low birth weight babies were found 23% for rural and 19% for urban population. The causes of low birth weight are complex and interdependent, and various maternal factors are known to influence the birth weight of neonates. The present study was conducted in the department of Pediatrics, Sri Siddhartha Medical College Hospital, Tumkur, Karnataka, India. A total of 100 consecutive newborn babies with birth weight 2500gms or less were included in this study. Male babies were 57% and 43% were female babies. In this study 51% of the mothers were in the age group of 21-25yrs with mean ± SD: 23.62±4.15. In this study 65% of the babies were in the birth weight range of 1500-2499grams and 30% of the babies were in the range of 1001-1499grams with mean ± SD: 1615.98±388.24. In this study 39% of the mothers had less interpregnancy interval, 20% mothers had consanguineous marriage, 15% of the mothers had previous history of low birth weight babies and 16% of the mothers had history of abortion. Thirty six percent of the mothers had severe pregnancy induced hypertension and 28% of the mothers had anemia. Acute gastroenteritis and decreased liquor in mothers had a significant association with low birth weight with p value =0.0044 and 0.0002 respectively. The most important factor influencing the birth weight of new born is the socioeconomic environment that has the direct influence on maternal nutrition, height, weight and Hb%. Meanwhile, young maternal age, high parity, lack of birth spacing, lack of education, APH, toxemia, UTI and malaria are additional factors responsible for LBW babies in our set up. Health education, socioeconomic development, maternal nutrition, and increasing the use of health services during pregnancy, are all important for reducing low birth weight babies.
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Author(s): Viswanatha Kumar HM Kumar GV Cheluvegowda GK Mahesh SH
Low birth weight, PIH, Maternal infections, Anemia