Prevalence of Congenital Abnormalities and Its Related Risk Factors in Ardabil, Iran, 2011

Document Type : Original Article


1 M.Sc. of Midwifery, Ardabil Health Care Center, Ardabil University of Medical Sciences, Ardabil, Iran.

2 Fellowship of Neonatology, Faculty of Medicine, Ardabil University of Medical Sciences, Ardabil, Iran.

3 B.Sc. of Midwifery, Ardebil Health Care Center, Ardabil University of Medical Sciences, Ardebil, Iran.

4 Assistant Professor, Department of Health, Faculty of Health, Ardabil University of Medical Sciences, Ardabil, Iran.


Introduction: Congenital anomalies are the most common causes of disability and mortality in developed and developing countries. Cost of hospitalization and treatment of congenital anomalies impose a significant burden to families and society.  The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of congenital abnormalities and its related risk factors.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted on all neonates who were born from November 2010 to July 2011 in Ardabil hospitals, Iran. All the live newborns were examined during the first 24 hours of life. Out of 6868 live births during the study, 57 neonates with obvious congenital abnormalities were selected as case group and 180 normal neonates as control group. Data were collected using a self-designed questionnaire from review of prenatal and hospital delivery records. Data were analyzed using SPSS software version 16, univariate and multivariate regression analysis. P value less than 0.05 was considered significant.
Results: The prevalence of congenital abnormalities was 8.2 per 1000 live births.  The most common congenital abnormalities were respectively malformation of musculoskeletal system (35.1%), central nervous system (22.8%), digestive system (17.5%) urogenital system (15.8%) and chromosomal anomalies (8.8%).  Polyhydramnios (p=0.001, OR=14.4), oligohydramnios (p=0.009, OR=13), preeclampsia (p=0.001, OR=11.3), unwanted pregnancy (p=0.001, OR=4.9), urinary tract infection (p=0.04, OR=2.8), consanguineous marriages (p=0.038, OR=2.2) were determined as the risk factors of congenital abnormalities.
Conclusions: Early diagnosis of pregnant women with polyhydramnios, oligohydramnios, preeclampsia, unwanted pregnancy, urinary tract infection and consanguineous marriages may be an appropriate policy toward the prevention of congenital anomalies.