Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
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Sociodemographic factor associations with maternal and placental outcomes: A cluster and partial least squares regression analysis.

Placenta 2024 May
INTRODUCTION: Maternal social disadvantage adversely affects maternal and offspring health, with limited research on placental outcomes. Therefore, we examined maternal sociodemographic factor associations with placental and birth outcomes in general (Lifeways Cross-Generation Cohort) and at-risk (PEARS Study of mothers with overweight or obesity) populations of pregnant women.

METHODS: TwoStep cluster analysis profiled Lifeways mothers (n = 250) based on their age, parity, marital status, household income, private healthcare insurance, homeowner status, and education. Differences in placental and birth outcomes (untrimmed placental weight (PW), birthweight (BW) and BW:PW ratio) between clusters were assessed using one-way ANOVA and chi-square tests. Partial least squares regression analysed individual effects of sociodemographic factors on placental and birth outcomes in Lifeways and PEARS mothers (n = 461).

RESULTS: Clusters were classified as "Married Homeowners" (n = 140, 56 %), "Highest Income" (n = 58, 23.2 %) and "Renters" (n = 52, 20.8 %) in the Lifeways Cohort. Renters were younger, more likely to smoke, have a means-tested medical card and more pro-inflammatory diets compared to other clusters (p < 0.01). Compared to Married Homeowners, renters' offspring had lower BW (-259.26 g, p < 0.01), shorter birth length (-1.31 cm, p < 0.01) and smaller head circumference (-0.59 cm, p = 0.02). PLS regression analyses identified nulliparity as having the greatest negative effect on PW (Lifeways and PEARS) while being a homeowner had the greatest positive effect on PW (Lifeways).

CONCLUSION: Certain combinations of sociodemographic factors (particularly homeownership) were associated with less favourable lifestyle factors, and with birth, but not placental outcomes. When explored individually, parity contributed to the prediction of placental and birth outcomes in both cohorts of pregnant women.

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