The objective of this study is to explore associations between maternal and neonatal outcomes and maternal age, with particular reference to adolescent women.
The results of this study were that the odds of extremely low birth weight (<1000 g) were significantly higher in the adolescent group (≤19 years) compared with the reference group (adjusted OR (aOR) 4.13, 95% CI 1.41 to 12.11). The odds of very (<32 weeks) and extremely (<28 weeks) preterm delivery were also higher in the adolescent group (aOR 2.12, 95% CI 1.06 to 4.25 and aOR 5.06, 95% CI 1.23 to 20.78, respectively). Women in the adolescent group had lower odds of gestational diabetes (aOR 0.35, 95% CI 0.20 to 0.62), caesarean delivery (aOR 0.53, 95% CI 0.42 to 0.67 and instrumental delivery (aOR 0.53, 95% CI 0.41 to 0.67).
This study identifies important differences in maternal and neonatal outcomes between women by age group. These findings could help in identifying at-risk groups for additional support and tailored interventions to minimise the risk of adverse outcomes for these vulnerable groups. Further work is needed to identify the causal mechanisms linking age with outcomes in adolescent women where significant gaps in the literature exist.