Perinatal complications among different Asian-American subgroups

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This study was undertaken to investigate the differences in perinatal outcomes among Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) women.

Study design

A retrospective cohort study of all Japanese, Chinese, and Filipina women who delivered at University of California, San Francisco from 1985 to 2001 examined the incidence of gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, and preterm delivery.


Among the 6511 women delivered during the study period, the incidence of preeclampsia was highest among Filipina women (6.8%) compared with the Chinese and Japanese women (4.0% and 3.7%, respectively, P < .001). Gestational diabetes was most common in the Chinese and Filipina women (6.5% and 6.1%, respectively) compared with the Japanese women (3.4%, P = .013). Preterm delivery was also highest among Filipina women both before 37 weeks (12.2%, P < .001) and 34 weeks (4.8%, P = .004). These differences remained statistically significant after controlling for potential confounding variables.


We found significant differences in rates of preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, and preterm delivery in the Chinese, Japanese, and Filipino subgroups. In studies of race and ethnicity, it is important to examine Asian subgroups separately.

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