Determinants of Low Birth Weight among Term Babies at the Sacred Heart Hospital, Abeokuta, Nigeria


  • VI Olafimihan
  • AJ Ariba Department of Family Medicine, Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, Sagamu, Ogun State, Nigeria
  • SO Malomo



Background: Low birth weight (LBW) is a major contributor to the global burden of neonatal morbidity and mortality. It is important to identify the significant determinants of LBW, mainly among term babies, who should have achieved optimal weight gain before delivery to reduce the burden of LBW.

Objectives: To determine the Prevalence of LBW among term babies delivered in a Nigerian hospital and the socio-demographic and clinical correlates of LBW.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among two hundred and twenty-seven term babies and their mothers at the Sacred Heart Hospital, Lantoro (SHHL), Abeokuta, Nigeria, between November 2017 and February 2018.

Results: The Prevalence of LBW was 4.4 %. Over 90% of the mothers were educated, married and employed. There was a significant association between term-LBW and maternal booking BMI, anaemia at booking, multiple pregnancies, alcohol intake in pregnancy and paternal level of education. Underweight booking BMI, anaemia at booking, and low paternal level of education were independent predictors of term-LBW.

Conclusions: The Prevalence of term-LBW babies in this study was relatively low. Aside from multiple pregnancies, the other main determinants of LBW include modifiable parental socioeconomic factors. Further reduction in term LBW can be achieved by improving parental education and enhancing maternal health through pre-conception care.


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