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A Journal on Internal Medicine
Indexed/Abstracted in: BIOSIS Previews, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 1,6
Panminerva Medica 2001 September;43(3):155-9
Infants of immigrant parents in Italy. A national multicentre case control study
Bona G., Zaffaroni M., Cataldo F. *, Sandri F. **, Salvioli G. P. **
From the Paediatric Department of Novara, University of East Piedmont “A. Avogadro”, Novara, Italy
*Paediatric Department “Aiuto Materno”, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy
**Paediatric Department, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy
Background. The aim of this study was to evaluate health state of newborns of immigrated parents from developing countries.
Methods. Hospital records of 69,605 infants born during 1996/1997 in Italy were reviewed comparing, in a case-control study, each infant of immigrated parents to two infants born immediately before and after to Italian parents.
Results. Of the 69,605 newborns 3906 (5.6%) were born to immigrated parents. This prevalence prolongs the increasing trend observed during the last 10 years of infants born to immigrated parents and reduces the fall of the birth rate linked to the few infants born to Italian parents. It was influenced by geographical factors, being higher in Northen-Central Italy (7%) than in Southern and Insular Italy (2.8%), as consequence of more elevated incomes in these Italian regions. The origin countries of immigrated parents were mainly Northern Africa (31.7%), Eastern Europe (18%) and Sub Saharian Africa (11.6%). Infants of immigrated parents showed higher incidences of prematurity, low birth weight, asphixia and neonatal mortality rate than newborns with Italian parents. These higher incidences appeared related to some risk factors such as higher parity, short gestational age, some maternal infections, maternal drug dependence, maternal age less than 18 years, low familiar income, inadequate obstetric cares, difficulty to accessing the public health services.
Conclusions. The health problems of infants with immigrated parents are mainly related to social disadvantage and can be overcome improving the social state, the lifestyles and the obstetric cares of the immigrated women, so as monitoring their risk pregnancies.