Aim: The objective of this study was to identify maternal, obstetrical and reproductive factors associated with long-term changes in maternal weight after delivery. Materials & methods: Participants were enrolled in a longitudinal cohort study of maternal health 5-10 years after childbirth. Data were obtained from obstetrical records and a self-administered questionnaire. Weight at the time of first delivery (5-10 years prior) was obtained retrospectively and each womans weight at the time of her first delivery was compared with her current weight. Results: Among 948 women, obesity was associated with race, parity, education, history of diabetes and history of cesarean at the time of first delivery. On average, the difference between weight at the time of first delivery and weight 5-10 years later was -11 kg (11 kg weight loss). In a multivariate model, black race and diabetes were associated with significantly less weight loss. Cesarean delivery, parity and breastfeeding were not associated with changes in maternal weight. Conclusion: Black women and those with a history of diabetes may be appropriate targets for interventions that promote a long-term healthy weight after childbirth.
- postpartum weight retention
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