Influence of Socio-Economic Factors and Region of Birth on the Risk of Preeclampsia in Sweden

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Objectives: To investigate the association between socio-economic factors and the risk of preeclampsia in Sweden, specifically investigating if this relationship is confounded by maternal region of birth. Study design: All singleton births between 1999 and 2009 in an ethnically diverse area in southern Sweden, totaling 46,618 pregnancies, were included in this study. The data on maternal pregnancy outcomes were retrieved from a regional birth register and socio-economic variables from Statistics Sweden. The risk ratios for preeclampsia were calculated for educational level and household disposable income, adjusting for maternal region of birth, maternal age, body mass index, parity, and smoking. Results: Low income levels were associated with a higher risk for preeclampsia, adjusted risk ratio (aRR) = 1.25 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.99, 1.59) and aRR = 1.36 (95% CI: 1.10, 1.68) for the two lowest quintiles, respectively, compared to the highest. There was an educational gradient in preeclampsia risk, although not all categories reached statistical significance: aRR = 1.16, (95% CI: 0.89–1.50) for low educational attainment and aRR = 1.23 (95% CI: 1.08, 1.41) for intermediate educational attainment compared to women with highest education. The socio-economic gradient remained after adjusting for region of birth. There was a lower risk for preeclampsia for women born in Asia, aRR = 0.60 (95% CI: 0.47, 0.75), regardless of socio-economic position. Conclusion: An increased risk for preeclampsia was seen for women with measures of lower socio-economic position, even in a universal, government-funded healthcare setting. The relationship was not explained by region of birth, indicating that the excess risk is not due to ethnically differential genetic pre-disposition but rather due to modifiable factors.

TidskriftInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
StatusPublished - 2022 apr.

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ)

  • Reproduktionsmedicin och gynekologi


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