Frequency and Risk factors of Low Birth Weight in Rawalpindi, Pakistan

  • Usman Zafar Islamabad Medical and Dental College
  • Sadia Zafar Islamabad Medical and Dental College
  • Nadia Tariq Islamabad Medical and Dental College
  • Farah Rashid Islamabad Medical and Dental College
  • Khalid Hassan Islamabad Medical and Dental College
Keywords: Frequency, Low Birth Weight, Pakistan



Low birth weight is a key determinant of infant survival, health and development. There are many maternal and biological risk factors for it. The objective of this study is to determine frequency and associated risk factors of Low birth weight.


This cross-sectional study was carried out in department of obstetrics and gynecology; al Razi hospital, Rawalpindi from June 2016 till June 2020. Total sample size was 20,681 which was the total births during these years in this hospital setting. A structured pre tested questionnaire was used for data collection. SPSS version 23 was used for data analysis. Frequencies and percentages were calculated. Chi square test was used to determine association between LBW and socio demographic variables


The overall frequency of LBW was found to be 8.9%. Female babies were more likely to have LBW as compared to male babies (p=0.000). LBW babies had poor APGAR scoring as compared to normal weight (p=0.000). The frequency of LBW was higher amongst the mother who were <20years of age and >30years. Maternal weight had a direct while parity had inverse relationship with LBW.


Low birth weight babies have poor APGAR scoring and associated with maternal risk factors.

Author Biographies

Usman Zafar, Islamabad Medical and Dental College


Assistant Ptofessor, Medicine


Nadia Tariq, Islamabad Medical and Dental College


Associate Professor, Community Medicine

Farah Rashid, Islamabad Medical and Dental College


Professor and Head of Department, Community Medicine

Khalid Hassan, Islamabad Medical and Dental College

MBBS, M. Phil

Pricipal and Professor, Pathology


1. Kothari S, Jora R, Chouhan H. Incidence and risk factors for low birth weight, very low birth weight and extremely low birth weight babies in Western Rajasthan. Int J Med Paediatr Oncol. 2017;3:102-5. 10.18231/2455-6793.2017.0020.

2. Naqvi J, Siyal AA, Taqi T. Frequency and Outcome of Low Birth Weight Babies Admitted in Tertiary Care Hospital. National Editorial Advisory Board. 2018 Nov;29(11):32.

3. Jamshed S, Farah-Khan AB, Ali BB, Akram Z, Ariff M. Frequency of Low Birth Weight and its Relationship With Maternal Nutritional and Dietary Factors: A Cross-Sectional Study. Cureus. 2020 Jun;12(6). 10.7759/cureus.8731

4. Rashid F, Makhdoom S. Maternal Health in Pakistan: Where do we stand?. Journal of Islamabad Medical & Dental College. 2019 Sep 29;8(3):99-100.

5. Chanie H, Dilie A. Prevalence of low birth weight and associated factors among women delivered in debre markos referral hospital, East Gojam, Ethiopia, 2017. Prevalence. 2018;53.
6. Saeed A, Saeed AM. Maternal predictors of Low Birth Weight among women attending private hospitals of Lahore, Pakistan. Progress in Nutrition. 2017 Sep 1;19(3):257-63. 10.23751/pn.v19i3.5036

7. Shaikh F, Laghari GS, Syal AR, Hameed A, Nizamani MA. Complications of low birth weight babies during first 72 hours of life. Med channel. 2016 Jan 1;22(1):18-24.

8. Iltaf G, Shahid B, Khan M I. Incidence and associated risk factors of low birth weight babies born in Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayad Al-Nayan Hospital Muzaffarabad, Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Pak J Med Sci. 2017;33(3):626-630.

9. Khan A, Nasrullah F D, Jaleel R. Frequency and risk factors of low birth weight in term pregnancy. Pak J Med Sci. 2016;32(1):138-142.

10. Siramaneerat I, Agushybana F , Meebunmak Y. Maternal Risk Factors Associated with Low Birth Weight in Indonesia.The Open Public Health Journal. 2018;11: 377

11. Mahumud RA, Sultana M, Sarker AR. Distribution and Determinants of Low Birth Weight in Developing Countries. J Prev Med Public Health 2017;50:18-28

12. Ahankari A, Bapat S, Myles P, Fogarty A, Tata L. Factors associated with preterm delivery and low birth weight: a study from rural Maharashtra, India. F1000Research. 2017;6:72. 10.12688/f1000research.10659.1

13. Dahlui M, Azahar N, Oche OM, Aziz NA. Risk factors for low birth weight in Nigeria: evidence from the 2013 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey. Global health action. 2016 Dec 1;9(1):28822.

14. Ratnasiri AW, Parry SS, Arief VN, DeLacy IH, Halliday LA, DiLibero RJ, Basford KE. Recent trends, risk factors, and disparities in low birth weight in California, 2005–2014: a retrospective study. Maternal health, neonatology and perinatology. 2018 Dec 1;4(1):15.

15. Tshotetsi L, Dzikiti L, Hajison P, Feresu S. Maternal factors contributing to low birth weight deliveries in Tshwane District, South Africa. PloS one. 2019 Mar 1;14(3).

16. Zhou H, Wang A, Huang X, Guo S, Yang Y, Martin K, Tian X, Josephs-Spaulding J, Ma C, Scherpbier RW, Wang Y. Quality antenatal care protects against low birth weight in 42 poor counties of Western China. PloS one. 2019 Jan 16;14(1).

17. Uppadhaya SK, Agrawal N, Bhansali S, Garg K, Singh M. Utilization of antenatal health care services and its impact on birth weight of newborn in rural area of Western Rajasthan, India. International Journal Of Community Medicine And Public Health. 2017 Mar;4(3):680.

18. Gebregzabiherher Y, Haftu A, Weldemariam S, Gebrehiwet H. The prevalence and risk factors for low birth weight among term newborns in Adwa General Hospital, Northern Ethiopia. Obstetrics and gynecology international. 2017 Jul 4;2017.

19. Borah M, Agarwalla R. Maternal and socio-demographic determinants of low birth weight (LBW): A community-based study in a rural block of Assam. Journal of postgraduate medicine. 2016 Jul;62(3):178-181. 10.4103/0022-3859.184275

20. Parikh T, Parikh A. Maternal risk factors and outcome of low birth weight babies admitted to a Gujarat Adani Institute of Medical Science, Bhuj, Kutch, Gujarat, India-A cross-sectional study. International Journal of Medical Pediatrics and Oncology, April-June, 2017:3(2):54-56. 10.18231/2455-6793.2017.0015

21. Tela FG, Bezabih AM, Adhanu AK. Effect of pregnancy weight gain on infant birth weight among mothers attending antenatal care from private clinics in Mekelle City, Northern Ethiopia: A facility based follow-up study. PloS one. 2019 Mar 11;14(3).
How to Cite
Zafar U, Zafar S, Tariq N, Rashid F, Hassan K. Frequency and Risk factors of Low Birth Weight in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. JRMC [Internet]. 30Jun.2021 [cited 24Sep.2022];25(2):202-7. Available from: