Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes Following Motor Vehicle Crashes

The American Journal of Preventive Medicine recently released a study on birth outcomes after women were in motor vehicle crashes. 

In 2001-2008, 2.9% of pregnant North Carolina women were drivers in one or more crashes. After a single crash, compared to not being in a crash, pregnant drivers had slightly elevated rates of preterm birth and premature rupture of the membranes. Following a second or subsequent crash, pregnant drivers had more highly elevated rates of preterm birth, premature rupture of the membranes and stillbirth. Stillbirth rates were elevated following crashes involving unbelted pregnant drivers compared to belted pregnant drivers.

Crashes while driving during pregnancy were associated with elevated rates of adverse pregnancy outcomes, and multiple crashes were associated with even higher rates of adverse pregnancy outcomes. Crashes were especially harmful if drivers were unbelted.