Pregnancy Intention and Health Behaviors: Results from the Central Pennsylvania Women's Health Study Cohort

Cynthia H. Chuang; Carol S. Weisman; Marianne M. Hillemeier; Eleanor Bimla Schwarz; Fabian T. Camacho; Anne-Marie Dyer


Matern Child Health J. ;14(4):501-510. 

In This Article


Table 2 shows the frequencies for all independent variables. The main independent variable was pregnancy intention at baseline: 9% (n = 79) of women were considering a pregnancy in the next year, 37% (n = 317) were considering pregnancy some other time in the future, and 53% (n = 451) were not considering any future pregnancy.

Table 3 shows the bivariate relationships between baseline pregnancy intention and the seven behavioral outcomes. Women considering pregnancy within the next year were more likely to report positive longitudinal folic acid supplementation compared with women not considering future pregnancy. Other significant associations included vegetable consumption and binge drinking: in these cases, considering pregnancy some other time in the future reduced the odds of positive longitudinal behavior compared with women not considering future pregnancy. Table 4 shows multivariable logistic regression models for each of the behavioral outcomes, adjusting for all independent variables. Pregnancy intention fails to attain significance in any of these models. However, being interconceptional was associated with negative smoking and vaginal douching behavior. Having a pregnancy during the follow-up period significantly increased the odds of folic acid supplementation and avoiding binge drinking, whereas it reduced the odds of physical activity. Being in the youngest age group (18–24 years) was associated with negative binge drinking and smoking behaviors longitudinally, while higher education was associated with positive longitudinal physical activity.


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