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Birth Order, Interpregnancy Interval and Birth Outcomes among Filipino Infants


Miller, Jane E. (1994). Birth Order, Interpregnancy Interval and Birth Outcomes among Filipino Infants. Journal of Biosocial Science, 26(2), 243-259.


This study examines the effects of birth order and interpregnancy interval on birthweight, gestational age, weight-for-gestational age, infant length, and weight-for-length in a sample of 2063 births from a longitudinal study in the Philippines. First births are the most disadvantaged of any birth order/spacing group. The risks associated with short intervals (<6 months) and high birth order (fifth or higher) are confined to infants who have both attributes; there is no excess risk associated with short previous intervals among lower-order infants, nor for high birth order infants conceived after longer intervals. This pattern is observed for all five birth outcomes and neonatal mortality, and persists in models that control for mother's age, education, smoking, family health history and nutritional status. Since fewer than 2% of births are both short interval and high birth order, the potential reduction in the incidence of low birthweight or neonatal mortality from avoiding this category of high-risk births is quite small (1–2%).


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Journal of Biosocial Science


Miller, Jane E.