The effect of the lunar cycle on frequency of births and birth complications

Mountain Area Health Education Center, North Carolina, United States
American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (Impact Factor: 3.97). 06/2005; 192(5):1462-4. DOI: 10.1016/j.ajog.2004.12.034
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of the lunar cycle on the frequency of deliveries and/or delivery complications.
This was a retrospective cohort, secondary analysis of 564,039 births across 62 lunar cycles that were identified from North Carolina birth certificate data from 1997 to 2001.
Using analysis of variance and t-tests, we found no significant differences in the frequency of births, route of delivery, births to multigravid women, or birth complications across the 8 phases of the moon or between documented high- and low-volume intervals of the lunar cycle.
An analysis of 5 years of data demonstrated no predictable influence of the lunar cycle on deliveries or complications. As expected, this pervasive myth is not evidence based.

Download full-text


Available from: Shelley L Galvin, Aug 01, 2015
  • Source
    • "sample size . However , as mentioned in the ' Introduction ' , some researchers have been unable to show any significant difference between moon phases and some physiological and behavioral phenomena in humans ( Peters et al . 2001 ; Waldhoer et al . 2002 ; Alves et al . 2003 ; Holzheimer et al . 2003 ; Wolbank et al . 2003 ; Zargar et al . 2004 ; Arliss et al . 2005 ; Morton et al . 2005 ; Robert et al . 2006 ) . Our experience and ideas arising from different research in the fields demonstrate that this matter may have some methodological causes that respecting them would help the researchers in these fields :"
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The present research aims to study the effects of moon phases on serum sodium and lithium levels in rabbits. Twenty-four male rabbits in two separated groups (sodium and lithium groups) were studied. In each study group, there were 12 rabbits, and 40 mg/kg lithium carbonate was orally administered to rabbits in one group on a daily basis. On days 1, 5, 9, 13, 15, 17, 21, and 25 of a lunar month, blood samples were taken from all rabbits. The highest mean of serum sodium levels was observed on the first day and the lowest mean was related to the 15th lunar day. Significant difference was noted between the 1st, 5th, 13th, and 17th days of the lunar month. In the lithium group, there was also a decreasing trend from the 1st to 17th lunar day in serum lithium level, but there was no statistical difference between lithium serum levels on different days of the lunar month. Fluctuations of bodily fluids under the influence of moon phases can be an effective factor in the changes in serum sodium levels. It is probable that due to small sample size we could not find significant difference in serum lithium levels.
    Biological Rhythm Research 08/2011; 42(4):313-320. DOI:10.1080/09291016.2010.511136 · 1.22 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "While past studies have mostly rejected the presence of full moon effects (eg. Kelly et al 1996; Owen et al 1998; Chapman and Morrell 2000; Arliss et al 2005) some have found significant relationships (eg. Lieber 1978; Bhattacharjee 2000). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: There is a commonplace notion that full moons affect natality and mortality. To test this theory, we obtain daily births and deaths data from Australia, covering all 10,592 days from 1 January 1975 to 31 December 2003. We find that full moons are not associated with any significant change in the number of conceptions, births, or deaths. Moreover, our standard errors are sufficiently tight to make it possible to rule out even modest positive or negative effects of the lunar cycle.
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: As mentioned by many authors, the belief that the number of women going into labor and giving birth is higher during the full Moon is widespread, even among the medical staff. However, various statistical studies of the daily number of births along the Moon cycle, mostly on rather short periods (from 40 to 60 lunar cycles, i.e. less than 5 years), conclude to contradictory results, which strengthens the need for a powerful analysis on a large amount of data. We propose a large-scale signficance testing analysis of the full Moon effect in each lunar cycles from 1968 until 2005 based on the daily numbers of births in France. A multiple testing methodology which accounts for dependence among lunar cycles is used to guarantee both a high overall power and a control of the False Discovery Rate at a low level. Results confirm the existence of a small yet marked full Moon effect: on average, one cycle per year shows a significantly larger birth rate during a 6-days period around the Full moon day than the other days of the cycle, which is four times more than for a comparison between any other 6-days period and the rest of the cycle.
Show more