Predictors of healthy birth outcome in adolescents: a positive deviance approach.
ABSTRACT Pregnant adolescents experience elevated rates of adverse birth outcomes compared to older mothers. Positive deviance inquiry is the identification of uncommon behaviors and traits that result in better health outcomes for individuals in a population that shares similar risks. The purpose of our study was to utilize a positive deviance framework to identify sociodemographic and behavioral characteristics associated with a healthy birth outcome among adolescents.
This is a retrospective cohort study design.
We performed a secondary data analysis of vital records data from the State of Louisiana between January 1, 1995 and December 31, 2007.
Data included birth certificates from 35,013 Louisiana mothers age ≤19.
A healthy birth was defined as having an infant of weight between 2500 g and 4000 g, delivered vaginally without induction or instrumented delivery and in the absence of pregnancy, obstetric, or neonatal complications and anomalies.
Twenty-one percent of the study population was classified as positive deviants with healthy births. Multivariate log-linear regression was used to model predictors of healthy birth. Adolescents who were older, non-black, multiparous, non-smoking, married, gained a medium amount of weight, had a longer inter-pregnancy interval or received adequate prenatal care were most likely to experience a healthy pregnancy and birth. Ethnicity, alcohol use, father's information on the birth certificate and paternal characteristics did not significantly predict a positive birth outcome.
Characterizing positive deviant adolescents may help identify special populations for targeted intervention and important modifiable behaviors for the promotion of better birth outcomes in all young mothers.