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Sleep Disorders & Risk of Preterm Birth

Obstet Gynecol; ePub 2017 Aug 4; Felder, et al

Insomnia and sleep apnea are associated with significantly increased risk of preterm birth, a recent study found. The observational cohort study included nearly 3 million women in California between 2007 and 2012 with singleton neonates liveborn between 20 and 44 weeks of gestation without chromosomal abnormalities or major structural birth defects linked to a hospital discharge. Odds of preterm birth were examined by gestational age (<34 weeks, 34-36 weeks, and <37 weeks of gestation) and type. Researchers found:

  • Prevalence of preterm birth was 10.9% in the referent group vs 14.6% among women with a recorded sleep disorder diagnosis.
  • Odds of preterm birth were 1.3 for insomnia and 1.5 for sleep apnea, when compared with the referent group.
  • Risk varied by gestational age and preterm birth type.
  • Odds or preterm birth were not significantly increased for sleep-related movement disorders or other sleep disorders.


Felder JN, Baer RJ, Rand L, Jelliffe-Pawlowski LL, Prather AA. Sleep disorder diagnosis during pregnancy and risk of preterm birth. [Published online ahead of print August 4, 2017]. Obstet Gynecol. doi:10.1097/AOG.0000000000002132.