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n South African Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology - Obstetric and perinatal outcome in teenage pregnancies : research
Objective. To compare obstetric and perinatal outcome in teenage and non-teenage pregnancies.
Methods. We performed a retrospective analysis of case records of teenage pregnancies from January 2006 to December 2008. The subjects gave birth in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Malaya Medical Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, a referral tertiary care and teaching hospital with over 5 000 deliveries annually. Pregnancy outcomes in girls aged ≤19 years were compared with those in women aged >19 years. A total of 177 teenage pregnancies were compared with 200 pregnancies in older women.
Results. The prevalence of teenage pregnancies was 1.1%. Almost all subjects were in their first pregnancies. The study showed that teenage mothers had a significant risk of delivering low-birth-weight babies. There were no differences in the risk of anaemia, severe pre-eclampsia, caesarean delivery, postpartum haemorrhage or fetal distress in labour compared with the 200 women in the older age group. Of the pregnant teenagers, 26.9% did not receive any antenatal care at all.
Conclusion. The findings suggest that the long-held beliefs about the risks related to teenage pregnancy are not all justified. Early booking, adequate antenatal care and delivery by trained personnel should improve the obstetric and perinatal outcome in this age group.
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