Family Physician, 2001;11(3):7-10.


Adolescent pregnancy is associated with long term medical and sociological problems. For intervention, it is important to have information on their profile and obstetric outcome. A study was conducted in 1999 on teenage mothers compared to mothers in the 20-34 year age group. Antenatal records of all these mothers registered in a Malaysian semi-rural Health Clinic in 1998 were reviewed and the relevant information was analysed using descriptive statistics and chi-square for comparison in SPSS 7.5. Only 402 (80.9%) of the 497 antenatal records could be included. There were 40 (9.95%) adolescent pregnancies and 362 (90.05%) pregnancies in mothers aged 20-34 years. Pregnant adolescents were more likely to be Malays (85% versus 66%), unmarried (65% versus 5.5%) and less educated (32.5% versus 12.1%). They have a significantly lower rate of contraceptive usage (2.5% versus 20.2%) and tend to come late for their first antenatal visit (55% versus 18.5%). Their pregnancy complications of anaemia and pregnancy induced hypertension were no worse. But they had a significantly higher preterm delivery rate (37.5% versus 21.8%) and their babies were more likely to have low birth weight (32.5% versus 9.9%). Based on this preliminary finding, further investigations should be carried out and polices should include programmes targeted for this group.