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The time of conception affects baby's health
Does the time of conception affect baby health? According to researchers in the United States, for example, if the fertilization took place in May, the risk of premature birth would increase, which could be caused by flu viruses.
Flu viruses responsible for increased number of premature babies? Are children born in July healthier than December babies? Scientists have been dealing with this question for almost a hundred years. Now US researchers from Princeton University have taken up this topic again and have come to the conclusion, among other things, that children who are born in May are more likely to be born prematurely - and are therefore more likely to be born There is a risk of various diseases. According to the two US researchers Janet Currie and Hannes Schwandt, the reason for this connection may be the influenza: Because this could possibly lead to premature birth in pregnant women - and since the calculated date of birth after fertilization is in May or January, it falls exactly in the middle of the annual flu season in the USA.
US Researchers Analyze Data from More Than 1.4 Million Children For their study, the researchers "analyzed the seasonal health of childbirth with a large sample of 647,050 US groups of siblings with a total of 1,435,213 children," the report said by Janet Currie and Hannes Schwandt in the specialist magazine "PNAS". The researchers had deliberately only used the data from women who had given birth to more than one child - for two children born at different times of the year, it was “less likely that the connection between season and birth was less likely for the purpose of a detailed investigation of possible relationships have to do with the mother herself, ”said the scientists. The idea behind this method: avoid biasing the results - because "new work shows that mothers with a lower socioeconomic status tend to give birth to their children in months that are associated with increased complications during and after birth," she said two researchers.
“Increase in premature births of more than 10 percent” in children born in May
By evaluating the data, the researchers came to interesting results: On the one hand, “there was a clear low point in the length of pregnancy among babies that were born in May, which corresponds to an increase in premature births of more than 10 percent” and possibly a consequence of the flu effect could be, as Currie and Schwandt write in their article. In addition, the two scientists found another connection: "Children whose conception had taken place in the summer had eight to nine grams of additional weight at birth" compared to the other children, which was probably associated with a higher weight gain during the mothers pregnancy relationships - smoking or marital status, however, would not be able to explain these relationships, the researchers write.
Influenza as a possible explanation for premature births has not been given sufficient attention to date. Previous studies had already provided similar findings, but according to the researchers, influenza was not sufficiently taken into account here as a possible explanation for increased premature births. However, according to the authors of the article, it should also be taken into account that an influenza illness of the mother in the first months of pregnancy would mean increased risks - for example with regard to intellectual damage - for unborn children. However, the results of the current study would suggest that children born in the summer could have a health "advantage" over babies born in the winter, the researchers said in their article. (No)
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