Background: Understanding the effects of environmental factors on birth outcomes is crucial for public health because newborns' birth size affects their likelihood of childhood survival, risk of perinatal morbidity, and subsequent health and growth. Therefore, we investigated the associations of birth outcomes with prenatal air pollutant exposure and residential land use characteristics in the Greater Taipei Area. Methods: Participants were selected from the Longitudinal Examination across Prenatal and Postpartum Health in Taiwan study, which is an ongoing prospective study launched in July 2011. Parental sociodemographic data and medical histories were collected using standardized questionnaires. Mean air pollutant levels during each trimester were estimated using the spatial interpolation technique (Ordinary Kriging). Land use types surrounding participants' homes were evaluated within a designated radius of their residential addresses. We used multiple regressions to examine relationships between birth outcomes (i.e., birth weight, height, and head circumference) and environmental factors after adjustment for parental characteristics. Results: A total of 436 pregnant women–infant pairs were included. Birth weight was negatively associated with commercial land and greenhouse areas near the residence. Living near greenhouse areas negatively affected birth height, but higher greenness level within 100 m of the residence had a positive effect. Birth head circumference was only associated with sociodemographic factors in the multivariate model. Conclusion: Land use types near the homes of pregnant women, but not exposure to air pollutants, were significantly associated with birth weight and height in the Greater Taipei Area. Increased greenness level was positively associated with birth height, and living near commercial or greenhouse areas had adverse effects on birth outcomes. Living in a healthy neighborhood is critical for the birth outcomes of infants and presumably their health in early childhood.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Waste Management and Disposal