Fetal and Neonatal Impact of a Short Interpregnancy Interval in Moroccan Pregnant Women: A Retrospective Study

Document Type : Original Article


1 Research Team on Health and Nutrition of Mother and Child, Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy, Mohammed V University in Rabat, Morocco Higher Institute of Nursing Professions and Health Techniques, Rabat, Morocco

2 Research Team on Health and Nutrition of Mother and Child, Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy, Mohammed V University in Rabat, Morocco


Background: The short interpregnancy interval is a frequent clinical situation with adverse fetal, neonatal, and infantile outcomes. The present study aimed to assess the fetal and neonatal consequences of closely spaced pregnancies.
Methods: This retrospective study was conducted on 162 mothers, 81 of whom had an inter-pregnancy interval of fewer than 18 months, and 81 cases had an inter-pregnancy interval of more than 18 months. These participants had given birth at the Souissi Maternity Hospital in Rabat during the last 12 months. The socio-economic data, obstetrical history, as well as fetal and neonatal data, were extracted from medical records via a pre-established questionnaire. Statistical analysis was performed in SPSS software (version 20.0).
Results: The mean scores of the inter-pregnancy interval were reported as 11.83±3.08 and 29.83±9.83 in the groups of closely spaced pregnancies and inter-pregnancy intervals of more than 18 months (P=0.03). The number of illiterate women was significantly higher in the group with a short interpregnancy interval, compared to that in the group with an interpregnancy interval over 18 months (46.9% versus 9.9; P<0.001). Almost one-third of women with a short interpregnancy interval had a premature birth. Other adverse fetal outcomes, including low birth weight and respiratory distress, were detected with prevalence rates of 21% (p<0.001) and 9.9%, respectively (P=0.04).
Conclusion: As evidenced by the results of this study, it is essential to inform families and mothers about the fact that a reasonable delay (> 18 months)  between pregnancies reduces the risks for both mother and child.


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