PUBLIC HEALTH

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Couples’ Pre-Pregnancy Caffeine Consumption Linked to Miscarriage Risk

 

According to a study published online in Fertility and Sterility (22 March 2016), a study was performed to estimate pregnancy loss incidence in a contemporary cohort of couples whose lifestyles were measured during sensitive windows of reproduction to identify factors associated with pregnancy loss for the continual refinement of preconception guidance. For the study, the authors analyzed data from the Longitudinal Investigation of Fertility and the Environment (LIFE) Study, which was established to examine the relationship between fertility, lifestyle and exposure to environmental chemicals.

 

This was a prospective cohort with preconception enrollment performed in 16 counties in Michigan and Texas, with 344 couples with a singleton pregnancy followed daily through 7 post-conception weeks of gestation. The study tracked the couples’ daily recorded use of cigarettes, caffeinated and alcoholic beverages, and multivitamins and each women used fertility for ovulation detection and digital pregnancy tests. Pregnancy loss was denoted by conversion to a negative pregnancy test, onset of menses, or clinical confirmation depending upon gestation. Using proportional hazards regression and accounting for right censoring, the authors estimated adjusted hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals (aHR, 95% CI) for couples’ lifestyles (cigarette smoking, alcoholic and caffeinated drinks, multivitamins) during three sensitive windows: preconception, early pregnancy, and peri-conception. The main outcome measures were incidence and risk factors for pregnancy loss.

 

Results showed that 98/344 (28%) women with a singleton pregnancy experienced an observed pregnancy loss. In the preconception window, loss was associated with female age >35 years (aHR = 1.96) accounting for couples’ ages, women’s and men’s consumption of >2 daily caffeinated beverages (aHR 1.74 and 1.73, respectively), and women’s vitamin adherence (aHR 0.45,). The findings were similar for lifestyle during the early pregnancy and peri-conception windows.

 

According to the authors, a woman is more likely to miscarry if she and her partner drink more than two caffeinated beverages a day during the weeks leading up to conception, and similarly, women who drank more than two daily caffeinated beverages during the first seven weeks of pregnancy were also more likely to miscarry. However, women who took a daily multivitamin before conception and through early pregnancy were less likely to miscarry than women who did not.

 

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