Management in Health, Vol 20, No 4 (2016)

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DETERMINANTS OF PREMATURE BIRTH IN SHKODER, THE MAIN REGION IN NORTH ALBANIA

Artan MESI, Arjan BREGU, Herion MUJA, Genc BURAZERI

Abstract


BACKGROUND: Premature birth is a major public health problem worldwide. Our aim was to assess maternal socio-demographic and behavioral determinants of premature birth in Shkoder, which is one of the main regions in Albania.

METHODS: This was a case-control study including all premature births (cases: N=343) and a representative sample of full-term births (controls: N=372) pertinent to the Regional Hospital of Shkoder during the period January 2014 – December 2015. Information on maternal socio-demographic characteristics and behavioral factors was collected for all study participants. Binary logistic regression was used to assess the association of premature births with maternal socio-demographic characteristics and lifestyle factors.  

RESULTS: In multivariable-adjusted logistic regression models, independent “predictors” of premature births were maternal older age (OR=4.7, 95%CI=2.7-8.0), a lower educational level (OR=5.9, 95%CI=3.2-8.7), unemployment (OR=1.6, 95%CI=1.1-2.2), smoking and alcohol consumption (OR=1.9, 95%CI=1.1-3.3 and OR=2.0, 95%CI=1.1-3.7, respectively) and overweight and obesity (OR=1.8, 95%CI=1.2-2.7 and OR=2.3, 95%CI=1.6-3.3, respectively).   

CONCLUSION: This study provides useful information about several maternal socio-demographic and behavioral correlates of premature births in Shkoder, which constitutes the main region in north Albania. Findings from this study indicate the need for active preventive and health promotion programs in order to avoid premature births in transitional Albania.   

 

Keywords: Albania, alcohol consumption, body mass index, full-term birth, pregnant women, premature birth, Shkoder, smoking.   


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