Maternal smoking and preterm birth: an unresolved health challenge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Maternal exposure to tobacco smoke in pregnancy is a key modifiable risk factor for baby death and disability. Smoking is linked to preterm birth (birth before 37 weeks’ gestation), stillbirth and neonatal mortality, as well as to miscarriage, fetal growth restriction and infant morbidity [1]. The worldwide prevalence of maternal smoking in pregnancy is 2%, with Europe having the highest prevalence at 8% [2]. Although rates of maternal smoking in pregnancy are decreasing in many high-income countries [2], this decline is slower among women of lower socio-economic status, contributing to health inequalities [3]. In certain low- and middle-income countries, maternal smoking rates are static or rising [4-6].
Original languageEnglish
JournalPLoS Medicine
Early online date14 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2020


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