The associations of parental under-education and unemployment on the risk of preterm birth: 2003 Korean National Birth Registration database Seung Han Shin1

Hyung Tak Lim, Hyun Young Park, Sang Min Park, Han Suk Kim

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Objectives This study aimed to investigate the associations of combined parental low educational level and combined parental unemployment on the risk of preterm birth (PTB) in Korea. Methods Data on 427,857 singleton births were obtained from the National Birth Registration (NBR) database in 2003 and analyzed. Parental education and parental employment status were combined as exposure for analysis. Place of birth, sex, marital status, parental age and parity were included for analysis of unconditional multiple logistic regressions. PTB was defined as birth before a gestational age of 37 complete weeks. Results Group of the lowest educational level, below high school, had the highest odds of PTB in both father and mother in multivariable analysis [odds ratio (OR) 1.15 and 1.16, respectively]. After combining parental educational status for the multivariable analysis, the highest probability of PTB was in families where both parents had below college level education (OR 1.22). As for paternal employment, the multivariable analysis showed an increased rate of PTB occurred where the father was unemployed (OR 1.11). After combining the employment status of both parents, the multivariable analysis revealed that PTB was only significant in families where both parents were unemployed (OR 1.09). Conclusions We found that combined parental low educational level and combined parental unemployment increased the likelihood of preterm birth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-260
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Public Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2012


  • Preterm birth Education Employment Socioeconomic status

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