Although studies have examined overall temporal changes in gestational age-specific fetal mortality rates, there is little information on the current status of racial/ethnic differences. We hypothesize that differences exist between racial/ethnic groups across gestational age and that these differences are not equally distributed.
Using the 2009-2013 data from US fetal death and live birth files for non-Hispanic white (NHW); non-Hispanic black (NHB); Hispanic; and American Indian/Alaska Native (AIAN) women, we conducted analyses to examine fetal mortality rates and estimate adjusted prevalence rate ratios and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).
There were lower risks of fetal mortality among NHB women (aPRR = 0.76; 95% CI = 0.71-0.81) and Hispanic women (aPRR = 0.89; 95% CI = 0.83-0.96) compared with NHWs at 22-23 weeks' gestation. For NHB women, the risk was higher starting at 32-33 weeks (aPRR = 1.11; 95% CI = 1.04-1.18) and continued to increase as gestational age increased. Hispanic and AIAN women had lower risks of fetal mortality compared with NHW women until 38-39 weeks.
Further examination is needed to identify causes of fetal death within the later pregnancy period and how those causes and their antecedents might differ by race and ethnicity.
The purpose of this study was to investigate ethnic disparity in stillbirth, infant mortality and cause-specific infant mortality in Denmark during 1981-2003. From population-covering registries, births from the five largest ethnic minority groups and the Danish majority were identified. Mortality rates and relative risks were calculated for stillbirth and infant mortality. Some ethnic minority groups had increased mortality when compared to majority population. Socioeconomic position did not seem to explain the difference.
To elucidate possible mechanisms behind the increased risk of stillbirth and infant mortality among migrants in Denmark, this study aimed to analyse characteristics of perinatal deaths at Hvidovre Hospital 2006-2010 - -according to maternal country of origin.
We identified children born at Hvidovre Hospital who died perinatally and included the patient files in a series of case studies. Our data were linked to data from population-covering registries in Statistics Denmark. Timing, causes of death as well as social, medical and obstetric characteristics of the parents were described according to maternal country of origin.
This study included 125 perinatal deaths. The data indicated that intrapartum death, death caused by maternal disease, lethal malformation and preterm birth may be more frequent among non-Western than among Danish-born women. Obesity and disposition to diabetes may also be more prevalent among the non-Western women.
The role of obesity, gestational diabetes, preeclampsia and severe congenital anomalies should be a main focus in improving our understanding the increased risk of perinatal death among non-Western migrant women in Denmark. Six of 28 perinatal deaths in the non-Western group were intrapartum deaths and warrants further concern.
This project was funded by the Danish Council for Strategic Research as part of the SULIM project.
The linkage of data from patient files to data from Statistics Denmark was approved by the Danish Data Protection Agency. Only anonymised data were used.
Inuit and First Nations populations have higher rates of stillbirth than non-Aboriginal populations in Canada do, but little is known about the timing and cause of stillbirth in Aboriginal populations. We compared gestational age- and cause-specific stillbirth rates in Inuit and First Nations populations with the rates in the non-Aboriginal population in Quebec.
Data included singleton stillbirths and live births at 24 or more gestational weeks among Quebec residents from 1981 to 2009. We calculated odds ratios (ORs), rate differences and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for the retrospective cohort of Inuit and First Nations births relative to non-Aboriginal births using fetuses at risk (i.e., ongoing pregnancies) as denominators and adjusting for maternal characteristics. The main outcomes were stillbirth by gestational age (24-27, 28-36, = 37 wk) and cause of death.
Rates of stillbirth per 1000 births were greater among Inuit (6.8) and First Nations (5.7) than among non-Aboriginal (3.6) residents. Relative to the non-Aboriginal population, the risk of stillbirth was greater at term (= 37 wk) than before term for both Inuit (OR 3.1, 95% CI 1.9 to 4.8) and First Nations (OR 2.6, 95% CI 2.1 to 3.3) populations. Causes most strongly associated with stillbirth were poor fetal growth, placental disorders and congenital anomalies among the Inuit, and hypertension and diabetes among the First Nations residents.
Stillbirth rates in Aboriginal populations were particularly high at term gestation. Poor fetal growth, placental disorders and congenital anomalies were important causes of stillbirth among the Inuit, and diabetic and hypertensive complications were important causes in the First Nations population. Prevention may require improvements in pregnancy and obstetric care.
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Seasonal patterns of neonatal mortality and stillbirths have been found around the world. However, little is known about the association between season of birth and infant mortality of pre-industrial societies in a subarctic environment. In this study, we compared how season of birth affected the neonatal and stillbirth risk among the Sami and non-Sami in Swedish Sápmi during the nineteenth century. Using digitised parish records from the Demographic Data Base at Umeå University, we applied logistic regression models for estimating the association of season of birth with stillbirths and neonatal mortality, respectively. Higher neonatal mortality was found among the winter- and autumn-born Sami, compared to summer-born infants. Stillbirth risk was higher during autumn compared to summer among the Sami, whereas we found no seasonal differences in mortality among the non-Sami population. We relate the higher neonatal mortality risk among winter-born Sami to differences in seasonality of living conditions associated with reindeer herding.