[Obstetrical outcome in teenage pregnancies in The Netherlands].Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd 1993; 137(49):2536-40NT
To compare the course of teenage pregnancies and deliveries with that in women between the ages of 20 and 29.
Using data from the 1989 National Obstetric Database (LVR), 4500 teenage pregnancies were studied, to compare the risk of preterm birth, low birth weight and delivering a small for gestational age (SGA) baby between teenagers and older women.
Women between the ages of 13 and 19 ran one and a half times as high a risk of having a preterm baby as women between the ages of 20 and 29 years (p < 0.0001). The risk of intrauterine death was 4 times as high for age 13-17 and 2 times as high for age 18-19 compared with older women (p < 0.0001). These results were found for teenage mothers of Dutch origin as well as for young mothers of foreign descent. Deliveries by teenagers were more often spontaneous, were of shorter duration and less often needed assistance than deliveries in older mothers (p < 0.001).
Even in the Netherlands, with the lowest teenage pregnancy rate in the Western world and a prenatal care system generally considered of high quality, teenage pregnancies have less favourable outcomes than those in older women. Since we had no information on cultural background, socioeconomic status or life style, further research into determinants of outcomes of Dutch teenage pregnancies is indicated.