Conference Coverage

Maternal morbidity and BMI: A dose-response relationship



From this group, they included women aged 15-50 years who delivered at 20-45 weeks’ gestational age. Women with prepregnancy BMIs less than 18.5 kg/m2 – those who were underweight – were excluded.

Dr. Platner and her coinvestigators used multivariable analysis to see what association the full range of obesity classes had with severe maternal morbidity, adjusting for many socioeconomic and demographic factors.

Of the 539,870 women included in the study, 3.3% experienced severe maternal morbidity, and 17.4% of patients met criteria for obesity. “Across all classes of obesity, there was a significantly greater risk of severe maternal morbidity, compared to nonobese women,” wrote Dr. Platner and her colleagues in the poster accompanying the presentation.

These risks climbed for women with the highest BMIs, however. “Women with higher levels of obesity, not surprisingly, are at increased risk” of severe maternal morbidity, said Dr. Platner. She and her colleagues noted in the poster that, “There is a significant dose-response relationship between increasing obesity class and risk of [severe maternal morbidity] at delivery hospitalization.”


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