Stillbirths higher after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita - 8 News NOW

Stillbirths higher after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita

FRIDAY, May 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of stillbirth among pregnant women greatly increased following hurricanes Katrina and Rita, a new study shows.

Katrina struck Louisiana on Aug. 29, 2005, and Rita struck on Sept. 24 that same year. Both hurricanes caused widespread property and infrastructure damage, along with many deaths and injuries.

In this study, researchers investigated the risk of stillbirth among pregnant women in damaged and undamaged areas in the 28 months after Katrina struck.

Compared to undamaged areas of Louisiana, the risk of stillbirth was 40 percent higher in areas where 10 percent to 50 percent of housing had been damaged, and more than twice as high in areas were more than 50 percent of housing had been damaged, according to Sammy Zahran and colleagues from Colorado State University.

After accounting for other known risk factors, the researchers calculated that every 1 percent increase in the extent of damage to housing was associated with a 7 percent rise in the number of stillbirths. Based on those figures, the investigators concluded that up to half of the 410 stillbirths in extensively damaged areas may have been the direct result of the hurricanes and the damage they caused.

Their estimates suggest that stillbirths accounted for about 18 percent to 30 percent of all the deaths that occurred in the wake of the hurricanes, according to the study published online May 8 in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

Previous research has found a link between stress, depression and mental trauma in pregnant women and increased risk of birth complications, including stillbirth, the study authors said.

They noted that climate change could lead to more and stronger hurricanes, resulting in increased risk to pregnant women and their unborn babies.

Although the study has found an association between hurricanes and the risk of stillbirth, it can't definitively prove that the storms were the cause of the increase in stillbirths.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about stillbirth.

Copyright © 2014 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

  • Paula's Health NotesLas Vegas Health NewsMore>>

  • Fixing gerd for good

    Fixing gerd for good

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 3:21 PM EDT2014-08-19 19:21:39 GMT
    Acid reflux disease, a condition commonly known as “GERD”, affects about one-third of Americans. It can cause pain, coughing, heartburn and can even lead to cancer. Now, a simple procedure may fix GERD for good.More>>
    Acid reflux disease, a condition commonly known as “GERD”, affects about one-third of Americans. It can cause pain, coughing, heartburn and can even lead to cancer. Now, a simple procedure may fix GERD for good.More>>
  • Ice cold heart therapy

    Ice cold heart therapy

    Friday, August 15 2014 5:05 PM EDT2014-08-15 21:05:13 GMT
    A trial fibrillation affects about 2.7 million Americans. It's a condition that causes heart palpitations, shortness of breath and dizziness. If left untreated, it can be life-threatening. Now doctors are freezing the problem away.More>>
    A trial fibrillation affects about 2.7 million Americans. It's a condition that causes heart palpitations, shortness of breath and dizziness. If left untreated, it can be life-threatening. Now doctors are freezing the problem away.More>>
  • Pets Help Cancer Patients: Swoosh on the job!

    Pets Help Cancer Patients: Swoosh on the job!

    Friday, August 8 2014 3:42 PM EDT2014-08-08 19:42:16 GMT
    More than 13,000 children will be diagnosed with cancer each year. Many of these kids have to endure painful treatments that trigger stress, anxiety and depression.More>>
    More than 13,000 children will be diagnosed with cancer each year. Many of these kids have to endure painful treatments that trigger stress, anxiety and depression.More>>
*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KLAS. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.