Background: Immigration from Ethiopia to Israel started about 30 years ago. We aimed to compare birth outcomes between Israeli women of Ethiopian origin and Israeli-born, non-Ethiopian women. We hypothesized a higher frequency of adverse birth outcomes among Ethiopian women and a trend of improvement among those who were raised in Israel since early childhood. Methods: This is a descriptive study, comparing birth outcomes of Ethiopian (n = 1,319) and non-Ethiopian women (n = 27,307) who gave birth in a medical center in Central Israel in 2002 to 2009. Ethiopian women were further categorized by age at immigration. Logistic regressions were constructed to compare the incidence of adverse birth outcomes between Ethiopian and non-Ethiopian women, controlling for potential confounders. Results: Ethiopian women had about twice the incidence of very and extremely preterm births, compared with non-Ethiopians. Ethiopian women had twice the odds for neonates who were either small for gestational age or had low 5-minute Apgar scores. Ethiopian women had about threefold increased risk of stillbirths (OR 2.9 [95% CI 1.87-4.49]). No trend of improvement was noted for women who were raised in Israel from early childhood. Conclusion: Ethiopian women are at increased risk of adverse birth outcomes. Future research is needed to investigate the underlying causes for the increased risks and lack of improvement among those who were raised in Israel that will lead to effective interventions.
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© 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Age at immigration
- Migrant health
- Perinatal outcomes