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Maternal history of childhood sexual abuse and preterm birth: an epidemiologic review.

Wosu AC, Gelaye B, Williams MA - BMC Pregnancy Childbirth (2015)

Bottom Line: Exposure to CSA or other early life traumatic experiences has been associated with adverse reproductive and pregnancy outcomes.Women with a history of CSA had 2.6 to 4.8-fold increased odds of PTB as compared with women without a history of CSA.Three other studies did not observe statistically significant differences in rates of PTB or mean gestational age at birth in relation to a history of CSA.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, 677 Huntington Ave, K505F, Boston, MA, 02115, USA. adaeze.wosu@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT

Background: History of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) is highly prevalent with as many as one in four American women being victims. Exposure to CSA or other early life traumatic experiences has been associated with adverse reproductive and pregnancy outcomes. However, the effects of CSA on preterm delivery (PTB), a leading cause of neonatal mortality, remain poorly understood. The objectives of this review are (i) to synthesize the available research investigating the relationship between maternal history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) and preterm delivery (PTB); (ii) to provide suggestions for improving future research on this topic; and (iii) to highlight implications for clinical practice and public health.

Methods: Relevant articles were identified through searches of four electronic databases (PubMed, CINAHL, Web of Science Core Collection and BIOSIS Online) for studies published before March 2014, as well as through reviewing references of published articles.

Results: A total of six studies published from 1992 to 2010 were included in this review. Overall, findings were inconsistent. Three studies reported statistically significant associations of CSA with PTB (<37 weeks gestation) or shorter mean gestational age at birth. Women with a history of CSA had 2.6 to 4.8-fold increased odds of PTB as compared with women without a history of CSA. Three other studies did not observe statistically significant differences in rates of PTB or mean gestational age at birth in relation to a history of CSA.

Conclusions: Available evidence on this topic is sparse and inconsistent, and limited by a number of methodological challenges. Given the ubiquity of CSA, as well as the clinical and public health significance of PTB, more rigorously designed epidemiologic studies on the association between CSA and PTB are warranted.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Flowchart showing selection of articles reporting on the relationship between CSA and preterm birth
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Fig1: Flowchart showing selection of articles reporting on the relationship between CSA and preterm birth

Mentions: The electronic database search identified 2,207 titles, of which 1955 were duplicates or rejected upon title review. The abstracts of the remaining unique 252 articles were read. Of these, 34 were selected for full-text screening (Fig. 1 summarizes the selection and screening process). Six full-length papers met the inclusion criteria and were included in this review (Table 2—papers in table are arranged by year of publication). The studies were published from 1992 to 2010 and in English. Four of the studies were from the United States while the other two were from Norway and Germany, respectively. Three studies used a prospective cohort design, two were retrospective cohort studies, and one was a case–control study. Findings were inconsistent, with only three studies reporting statistically significant positive associations of CSA with PTB or shorter mean gestational age at birth. In the sections below, we describe each study.Fig. 1


Maternal history of childhood sexual abuse and preterm birth: an epidemiologic review.

Wosu AC, Gelaye B, Williams MA - BMC Pregnancy Childbirth (2015)

Flowchart showing selection of articles reporting on the relationship between CSA and preterm birth
© Copyright Policy - OpenAccess
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4537581&req=5

Fig1: Flowchart showing selection of articles reporting on the relationship between CSA and preterm birth
Mentions: The electronic database search identified 2,207 titles, of which 1955 were duplicates or rejected upon title review. The abstracts of the remaining unique 252 articles were read. Of these, 34 were selected for full-text screening (Fig. 1 summarizes the selection and screening process). Six full-length papers met the inclusion criteria and were included in this review (Table 2—papers in table are arranged by year of publication). The studies were published from 1992 to 2010 and in English. Four of the studies were from the United States while the other two were from Norway and Germany, respectively. Three studies used a prospective cohort design, two were retrospective cohort studies, and one was a case–control study. Findings were inconsistent, with only three studies reporting statistically significant positive associations of CSA with PTB or shorter mean gestational age at birth. In the sections below, we describe each study.Fig. 1

Bottom Line: Exposure to CSA or other early life traumatic experiences has been associated with adverse reproductive and pregnancy outcomes.Women with a history of CSA had 2.6 to 4.8-fold increased odds of PTB as compared with women without a history of CSA.Three other studies did not observe statistically significant differences in rates of PTB or mean gestational age at birth in relation to a history of CSA.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, 677 Huntington Ave, K505F, Boston, MA, 02115, USA. adaeze.wosu@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT

Background: History of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) is highly prevalent with as many as one in four American women being victims. Exposure to CSA or other early life traumatic experiences has been associated with adverse reproductive and pregnancy outcomes. However, the effects of CSA on preterm delivery (PTB), a leading cause of neonatal mortality, remain poorly understood. The objectives of this review are (i) to synthesize the available research investigating the relationship between maternal history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) and preterm delivery (PTB); (ii) to provide suggestions for improving future research on this topic; and (iii) to highlight implications for clinical practice and public health.

Methods: Relevant articles were identified through searches of four electronic databases (PubMed, CINAHL, Web of Science Core Collection and BIOSIS Online) for studies published before March 2014, as well as through reviewing references of published articles.

Results: A total of six studies published from 1992 to 2010 were included in this review. Overall, findings were inconsistent. Three studies reported statistically significant associations of CSA with PTB (<37 weeks gestation) or shorter mean gestational age at birth. Women with a history of CSA had 2.6 to 4.8-fold increased odds of PTB as compared with women without a history of CSA. Three other studies did not observe statistically significant differences in rates of PTB or mean gestational age at birth in relation to a history of CSA.

Conclusions: Available evidence on this topic is sparse and inconsistent, and limited by a number of methodological challenges. Given the ubiquity of CSA, as well as the clinical and public health significance of PTB, more rigorously designed epidemiologic studies on the association between CSA and PTB are warranted.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus