WEDNESDAY, March 22, 2023 (HealthDay News) — The risk for adverse maternal outcomes is increased for women involved in motor vehicle crashes (MVCs) during pregnancy, according to a study published online March 20 in Injury Prevention.

Ya-Hui Chang, from the National Cheng Kung University in Tainan, Taiwan, and colleagues examined the association between MVCs during pregnancy and adverse maternal outcomes using a population-based nationwide dataset. Data were obtained from 20,844 births from women who had been involved in MVCs during pregnancy. A total of 83,274 control births from women matched on age, gestational age, and crash date were randomly selected.

The researchers found that the risks for placental abruption, prolonged uterine contractions, antepartum hemorrhage, and cesarean delivery were significantly higher for pregnant women involved in MVCs than controls (adjusted odds ratios, 1.51, 1.31, 1.19, and 1.05, respectively). In the MVCs with greater severity, such elevated risks tended to be higher. Higher odds ratios of various adverse maternal outcomes were seen for scooter riders versus car drivers.

“These findings reinforce the fact that health care workers should be aware of these effects and consider providing pregnant women with educational materials about road traffic safety and choice of vehicle while travelling during pregnancy,” the authors write.

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