Effects of Advanced Maternal Age and Race/Ethnicity on Placental Weight and Placental Weight/Birthweight Ratio in Very Low Birthweight Infants
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To study the association of advanced maternal age (AMA) and race/ethnicity on placental pathology in very low birthweight (VLBW) infants. Retrospective analysis of placental pathology of inborn singleton VLBW infants from a regional level 3 NICU between July, 2002 and June, 2009. Subjects were stratified by age and race/ethnicity. Statistical analysis included One-way ANOVA, Chi Square and multivariable analyses. A total of 739 mother/infant dyads were included. AMA was associated with a decrease in placental weight and placental weight/birthweight ratio. Black/Non-Hispanic mothers ≥35 had a lower placental weight (p = 0.01) and lower placental weight/birth weight ratio (z-score, −0.45 ± 0.71 vs −0.04 ± 1.1, p = 0.01) compared to Black/Non-Hispanic mothers <35 years of age. After controlling for gestational age, race/ethnicity, maternal diabetes, maternal smoking, maternal hypertension and clinical chorioamnionitis, AMA, but not race/ethnicity, remained independently associated with placental weight/birthweight ratio z score (full model r2 = 0.22, p < 0.01). In our study sample of VLBW infants, placental weight and placental weight/birthweight ratio were lower in mothers of advanced maternal age compared to mothers <35 years of age. Our data suggest that maternal age affects placentation in VLBW infants, which could influence maternal and neonatal outcomes.
KeywordsPlacenta Prematurity Maternal age Race/ethnicity
Conflict of interest
The authors of this paper have nothing to disclose. No financial or non-financial interests to declare.
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