Obstetric Determinants of Birth Weight Status of Babies Born at Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital, Kenya
Background: Low birth weight (LBW) is a serious public health problem, especially in developing countries. Globally, 15.5% of all births are born LBW and 95.6% of them are in developing countries. In Kenya, 8% of babies are born LBW and at Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital (JOOTRH), it is 11.1%. Despite several efforts such as antenatal care services put in place to improve the quality of maternal and child health, the rates of LBW are still high. LBW is a major cause of mortality and morbidity in infants. Objective: The objective of this study was to assess obstetric determinants of the birth weight status of babies born at JOOTRH, Kenya. Materials and Methods: This was a cross-sectional study with a sample size of 131 babies plus their mothers from a total population of 538 deliveries during the study period. Systematic random sampling was used to select the respondents. Data was collected using a questionnaire and record review checklist. Data analysis was done using descriptive statistics and inferential statistics, specifically logistic regression. Result: The study results showed that the prevalence of LBW was 13.7%. LBW was strongly associated with a birth interval of < 24 months (AOR = 13.722), hypertension (AOR = 11.753), previous history of LBW (COR = 14.0), and gestation at birth (COR = 3.75). Gravidity, previous history of miscarriage and gestation at which antenatal visits started had no association with LBW. Conclusion: The prevalence of LBW is 13.7%, higher than the national rate of 8% and statistically significant with a Z score of 2.398, p = 0.016. The birth interval of < 24 months, hypertension, previous history of LBW, and gestation at birth influenced the occurrence of LBW. Focused antenatal care to ensure early detection and management of high-risk pregnancies and educate pregnant mothers on the birth spacing of more than two years between two successive pregnancies to allow replenishment of nutrient stores is important in reducing LBW.
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Copyright (c) 2023 Lucia Kaluki Mutwika, Christine Agatha Onyango, PhD, David Omondi Okeyo, PhD
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