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Neighborhood assets and early pregnancy cardiometabolic risk factors
  • Published Date:
    Jan 10 2019
  • Source:
    Paediatr Perinat Epidemiol. 33(1):79-87
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Public Access Version Available on: January 10, 2020 information icon
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  • Description:

    Pre-pregnancy cardiometabolic risk factors are associated with increased risks of adverse pregnancy outcomes. Neighborhood features may reflect pre-pregnancy exposures that contribute to poor cardiometabolic health before pregnancy and may contribute to racial disparities in pregnancy outcomes.


    Early pregnancy measurements from 1,504 women enrolled in the Prenatal Exposures and Preeclampsia Prevention study were linked to a 2000 Census-based measure of neighborhood socioeconomic status and commercial data (food, alcohol, and retail density) during 1997–2001. Multilevel random-intercept linear regression was used to separately estimate the association between levels of neighborhood assets (low, mid-low, mid-high, high) and C-reactive protein (CRP), systolic blood pressure (SBP), and body mass index (BMI) in cross-sectional analyses. Low neighborhood assets have high-poverty/low-retail, whereas, high neighborhood assets have low-poverty/high-retail. Models were adjusted for individual-level factors (age and race), and we assessed effect modification by race.


    Low compared with high neighborhood assets were associated with higher BMI (β 1.95 kg/m2, 95% CI 0.89, 3.00), after adjusting for individual-level covariates. After adjusting for BMI and other covariates, low compared with high assets were associated with higher CRP concentrations (β 0.20 ng/mL, 95% CI 0.01, 0.39). Neighborhood assets were not associated with SBP. Race did not modify the association between neighborhood assets and cardiometabolic risk factors.


    Early pregnancy adiposity is related to neighborhood features independent of individual factors. Further, inflammation beyond accounting for adiposity is related to neighborhood features. Strategies that address neighborhood assets during pre-conception and interconception may be promising approaches to improve pre-pregnancy health.

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